Cisco Fuels Targeted Business Outcomes with IT/OT Convergence, Partnerships, and Acquisitions

By Chantal Polsonetti

Company and Product News

After initially delaying their annual industry event out of respect for the civil protests that broke out several weeks ago, industrial network infrastructure market leader Cisco held its virtual Cisco Live! event last week.  The >$50 billion company operates in numerous IT and infrastructure sectors, but their IoT summit news is of primary interest to ARC’s coverage.

Expansion of the Cisco industrial value proposition beyond leading-edge technology is evident in their emphasis on using their IoT offerings to drive a variety of specific business outcomes as noted in their Cisco Validated Designs.  These outcomes reflect a world where security is paramount, digitization is driving increased IT/OT collaboration, and expanding connectivity requirements are escalating the role of IT in industrial IoT projects.

industrial IoT edge

Enabling Outcomes by Bringing IT Tools to the OT Environment

Cisco is backing up this initiative with new and existing tools that extend IT capabilities to the industrial IoT edge while supporting real-time and bandwidth intensive applications.  These include bringing their intent-based networking capabilities to industrial network infrastructure devices and offering centralized management and policy control capabilities, including cloud management, via their DNA center, centralized dashboards, and Cybervision security platform.

New products that support these incremental capabilities include the 10 Gigabit IE3300 Rugged Series Switches, the IR1101 Integrated Services Router for critical infrastructure and remote assets, and two new LTE modules for use with the IR1101.  The IE3300 switches extend the benefits of Cisco’s intent-based networking to the industrial IoT edge to help secure, automate and manage deployments at scale.  The new switches support Cisco’s IoT security architecture, including Cisco Cyber Vision, providing visibility, operational insights, and protection against cybersecurity threats in operational environments.  The IR1101 Integrated Services Router can enable critical infrastructure and first responders with secure, reliable and uninterrupted connectivity so they can access information over a dedicated LTE band.  ARC covered the initial release of these products in an earlier blog.

Partnerships and Acquisitions to Support Business Outcomes

Cisco highlighted partnerships with Quanergy and Orange Cyberdefense, as well as their pending acquisition of wireless backhaul provider Fluidmesh, as evidence of their strategy’s ability to drive targeted outcomes.  Quanergy uses Cisco technology in its AI-powered 3D Lidar offerings to safely accelerate business process automation across a variety of applications ranging from smart cities to transportation and beyond.  France’s Orange Cyberdefense leverages the converged IT/OT toolset in their Industrie 4.0-centric security risk management offering, while the pending Fluidmesh acquisition will extend Cisco’s value proposition in industries with on-the-move assets and applications in situations where reliable backhaul is mission critical.

This blog is part of ARC’s continuing coverage of the industrial automation network infrastructure market and the industrial IoT edge.  Further information on ARC’s coverage can be found on our dedicated Industrial IoT edge webpage.


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