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Cisco pushes partners towards enterprise mobility at Partner Summit

Alex Scroxton

Cisco announced a number of enhancements to its mobility business at Partner Summit 2014 in Las Vegas on Wednesday, as it continues its attempt to push the channel towards software, the Internet of Everything, and the need to address the Line of Business (LOB) buyers increasingly bypassing IT departments and CIOs.

Discussing the $35bn opportunity around mobility – a stat that includes security, apps and datacentre market – Cisco director of marketing, Enterprise Mobility Group, Prashanth Shenoy said mobility could increase a deal size for Cisco partners fourfold or more.

“Mobility is a key sell for partners looking to sell into LOBs. LOBs are taking decisions independently of IT. If they want to bring in an app for sales and marketing they hire their own developer. If they want to store some files they go and use DropBox, or fire up a VM on Amazon,” said Shenoy. “IT has been bypassed, and it’s really important for partners to have a direct line to the new buyers.”

Cisco has taken three main steps to drive partners down this route, launching a new entry level 802.11ac Gigabit Wi-Fi access point, the Aironet 2700 Series; the Cisco Enterprise Mobility Services Platform (EMSP), an app-building software module; and Mobile Services Engine 8.0, adding new capabilities around location services and analytics.

Explained Shenoy, the EMSP service includes software development tools and barebone vertical applications to enable to channel to accelerate time to market for customer-centric apps. He claimed this could reduce development time and cost by up to 60%.

EMSP will be available on-premise or as a Cisco cloud-hosted services from May, and Shenoy billed it as a key tool for resellers and integrators to take Cisco solutions direct to LOB buyers.

Cisco VP and GM of wireless networking, Sujai Hajela, added: “Customers simply don’t have time in-house to develop all the mobility solutions they wish they could.

“This new solution breaks down those barriers and gives you, our partners, a new channel to sell new service offerings and provide customers with a way to create customised mobile applications to garner tangible business benefits. We’re moving from BYOD to Bring Your Own App (BYOA).”


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