Today Cisco announced IOx, a framework that accelerates the building, testing and deployment of IoT solutions using Cisco and third-party technology. This is an important development because Cisco, the dominant networking provider, is focusing tremendous resources in making IoT a reality while recognizing the need to encourage other industry participants – particularly application developers – to more readily advance their solutions.
What does Cisco’s IOx framework facilitate?
- Faster and simpler IoT application development. IOx provides both a Linux OS and an SDK that greatly eases the developer’s work to build, test and deploy applications against Cisco hardware.
- Higher quality solutions. Cisco is launching a set of hardened, edge devices that are particularly well suited to the burgeoning Industrial Internet. The Industrial Internet is one of our top three IoT trends for 2014. Cisco has long been the leader in providing the networking solutions for enterprises across industrial sectors.
- Faster IoT data analysis and decision-making. The IOx framework includes several components that allow for more rapid data analysis. These components include Cisco hardware with embedded storage and compute capabilities, application management tools and application integration within the IOx framework. In essence, enterprises will have access to data closer to the edge of the network without having to rely on aggregation of all data in a centralized cloud repository. This is particularly useful in situations where sensor data cannot be transported across country boundaries for legal or regulatory reasons – a very common issue in cloud IT deployments.
Solutions like Cisco IOx are very important in driving standardization across the IoT ecosystem. In prior research, we’ve written about AT&T’s M2X solution that facilitates a coherent secure data flow across hardware, applications and platforms. This is another example of a strong vendor creating frameworks to drive standardization across a solution set.
In addition, we believe Cisco’s announcement is a further indication of the importance of the Industrial Internet. We’ve written about the efforts of Bosch, Hitachi and Google in building the Industrial Internet ecosystem with product development, partnerships and acquisitions.
Earlier in 2014, we wrote about Cisco’s IoT aspirations and cited three areas of focus – acquisitions, channel partner enablement and industry solution development. Clearly this IOx announcement falls into two categories — industry solution development and channel partner enablement. We anticipate more announcements from Cisco in all three categories.
This announcement by Cisco continues to fuel our belief that the IT industry has a lot of value to add in the standardization of IoT solutions.
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