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Archive for November 2015

As more websites personalize content for users,
optimization efforts need to adapt.

Credit: Thinkstock

Content delivery networks (CDNs) have been the de facto standard method of improving internet content for years. CDNs work by pre-fetching content and putting it as close to the user as possible. The closer a user is to a CDN point of presence (POP), the better the performance.

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By integrating Cisco’s ACI, VCE aims to
take the complexity out of deploying SDN.

VCE, the company that started off as a joint venture between VMware, Cisco, and EMC, has been highly successful in simplifying the process of deploying converged infrastructure. Its flagship product, Vblock, enables customers to deploy a private cloud using a converged system from the three founding vendors. As widely deployed as VMware, Cisco, and EMC are, most customers do not have the skills to deploy the three sets of infrastructure in an optimized way. I’ve discussed this challenge with VCE and they’ve told me there are literally hundreds of thousands of configuration parameters, and VCE has done all of the heavy lifting to remove the complexity of deployment (disclosure: VCE and Cisco are clients of ZK Research).

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Acano’s technology will advance Cisco’s mission
of being able to deliver video to any screen,
on any device, regardless of the protocol.

At Cisco’s 2014 Collaboration Summit, Collaboration Technology Group (CTG) General Manager, Rowan Trollope was asked what success for him and the CTG group would look like a year from then (which is now). Rowan said, half jokingly, that success would be that the group would see 10% growth and he would still have a job.

At the time, CTG had seen consecutive years of falling revenues and the promise of 10% growth seemed unrealistic if not Pollyannaish. However, the group has been on quite the roll since then. It’s seen four consecutive quarters of growth (including 17% growth in this past quarter), the launch of its workstream communications and collaboration (WCC) solution, Spark (profiled in the joint ZK Research/TalkingPointz Report), and the acquisition of one of the leading Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) providers, Tropo.

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This week, Cisco announced some changes to its
CCIE Data Center and CCNA Security certifications
to prepare IT pros for the evolving IT landscape.

Credit: Thinkstock

One of the ways to measure an engineer’s value is by the number of certifications that he or she holds. In networking, the gold standard has always been Cisco certifications (disclosure: Cisco is a client of ZK Research). The company has a wide range of certifications, ranging from the entry-level Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) and culminating with the difficult-to-achieve but highly valued Cisco Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE). The perception of CCIEs is so high that the term has become part of networking vernacular. When describing difficult network challenges, it’s common to say that a particularly complex issue was so complicated that “even a team of CCIEs couldn’t solve it.”

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Credit: Thinkstock
The rise of virtualization has had a profound impact on the technology industry. In the networking industry, perhaps no vendor has ridden the wave of cloud more than Arista Networks. The company was founded a little over a decade ago, and today it is a publicly traded company with a market capitalization of over $4.6 billion.

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The feature set looks the same, but not
the pricing or go-to-market strategy.

A year ago last month, Unify officially took the covers off of its Circuit product, becoming the first mainstream UC company to launch one of the many workstream communications and collaboration (WCC) applications available today.

With Circuit’s one-year anniversary just behind us, and the attention Unify garnered earlier this month with the news of its acquisition by Atos, I thought it would be good to take a look at how the product has been doing, what Unify has learned, what changes we should expect to see moving forward, and how Circuit might fit into the Atos portfolio. I recently had the opportunity to catch up with Unify’s Bill Hurley, CMO, and Jan Hickisch, VP of product management, regarding what’s worked, what hasn’t worked, and what’s changed with Circuit.

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