MWC16 May Reveal that IoT Will Upset the Industry’s Balance of Power

Summary Bullets:

• The sharing economy plus IoT is changing the balance of power between telcos and their suppliers

• CSPs may be powerless to stop themselves from being marginalized.

There are two big questions hanging over Mobile World Congress 2016, which opens in Barcelona in a couple of weeks. The first is about who will win the scramble for account control in the Internet of Things. The second is about the industry’s balance of power as firms test the limits of the rented/shared asset ownership model.
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Is It a Bird? Is It a Plane? No, It’s a Google/SpaceX Satellite!

J. Stradling

J. Stradling

Summary Bullets:

  • Satellite technology advancements, including steerable beams as well as new middle Earth orbit (MEO) and low Earth orbit (LEO) constellations, can potentially benefit businesses with cost-effective, low-latency, high-speed connectivity.
  • Satellite innovation can open new enterprise-grade applications leveraging lower costs and higher performance, such as deploying satellite backup in case of terrestrial network outage and expanding target markets for cloud computing services.

Robust connectivity to the Internet worldwide remains elusive despite the aggressive efforts of pioneers such as Google and investment partner Fidelity. There are vast expanses of land and sea where the choice is between high-latency (up to one second per hop) GEO satellites, or lower-latency but very narrowband LEO or MEO constellations such as Orbcomm, Globalstar or Iridium. Read more of this post

Axway’s Acquisition of Appcelerator Increases Its Mobile Value Proposition

C. Dunlap

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • Appcelerator’s MADP offering will enhance Axway’s API services.
  • Appcelerator has struggled with a questionable business model that drastically changed a year ago.

Little-known Axway has purchased one of the leading MADP pure plays, Appcelerator, to enhance Axway’s API service offering with mobile technology and improve its competitive threat as it goes after enterprises launching mobile projects. Read more of this post

Simple Observation May Be the Best Means of Controlling the Democratization of Data

B. Shimmin

B. Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

  • IT leaders have begun to realize it’s impossible to completely lock down the use of external, unmanaged cloud services.
  • My hope is that as vendors seek to control the use of external data sources, they bear in mind that the means of gaining control may be compromise itself.

Shadow IT just got real. Or, at least, it’s well on its way to legitimacy now that IT leaders have begun to realize it’s impossible to completely lock down the use of external, unmanaged cloud services like file sharing and synchronization. Already vendors are seeking to capitalize upon the opportunity inherent within that realization. Consider Cisco’s recently introduced Cisco Cloud Consumption Service, which quite literally discovers and continuously monitors unmanaged cloud services. The idea is that by closely watching the use of such services, an organization can at a minimum identify security vulnerabilities and better manage (read: control) costs. Read more of this post

Enterprise Security: Three Themes We’re Watching in 2016

Summary Bullets:

• Another flurry of security vendor acquisitions is likely in 2016, thanks largely to slowing venture capital investing.

• Best-of-breed product integration and automation capabilities will be top industry storylines this year.

Many of you surely agree that end-of-year predictions articles are a tired trope, rolled out by publishers as click-bait while their staffs enjoy a holiday vacation. Here at Current Analysis, the Enterprise Security team (yes, it’s a team of one!) decided not to stare into the crystal ball last year, but with the first month of 2016 coming to a close, we wanted to highlight three trends that are guiding our research efforts this year.

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IIoT Trends and Predictions for the New Year

Kathryn Weldon - Research Director, Business Network and IT Services - Americas

Kathryn Weldon – Research Director, Business Network and IT Services – Americas

Summary Bullets:

• In IoT, connected car and other transportation verticals are seeing use cases from infotainment to automotive health and performance monitoring to fleet management. Asset tracking, retail apps, and utility management are also providing enterprise benefits.

• A number of promising new vertical solutions, technology enhancements and security services to deal with malware, data leakage, and security breach concerns are expected in 2016.

The following are some Current Analysis key observations for 2015 in Industrial IoT (IIoT) services. The points below also address our predictions of major changes to come in 2016. Subscribers can view the full report here: “2015 Wrap-up and 2016 Predictions for Enterprise Mobility and IoT Services,” January 6, 2016.

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Managed Service Bundles Help Ease SMB Challenges, but ROI is Key

Cindy Whelan – Principal Analyst, Network and Wholesale Services

Cindy Whelan – Principal Analyst, Network and Wholesale Services

Summary Bullets:

• Service providers are taking advantage of the rise in cloud services to create managed service bundles, providing small and mid-size businesses (SMBs) with a one-stop shop for solutions delivered at a single monthly rate.

• SMBs have an increasing array of options to support a move away from capital investment to an operational expense model, managed service bundles offer the potential to reduce complexity and manage costs.

SMBs, defined by Current Analysis as those with 20 to 500 employees, represent a sizable segment of communications users. Tier 1 providers such as AT&T, CenturyLink and Verizon have typically served this segment with business bundles that package business lines and Internet service under a single monthly fee for very small businesses, and PRIs and network-hosted VoIP for larger SMBs. Over the last several years, and coincident with the rise of new competitors in the form of cable operators such as Comcast Business and Time Warner Cable Business and over-the-top providers such as 8×8, major service providers have reinforced their focus on the SMB segment, reshaping partner strategies, adding tools and portals, and expanding VoIP and UC solutions to include managed bundle offers that frees SMBs from the task of managing communications services.

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802.11ah/HaLow: Do We Really Need Another Protocol?

M. Fratto

M. Fratto

• 802.11ah/HaLow offers long range, low power wireless connectivity compared to other 802.11 protocols.

• In a vacuum, more options to choose from is beneficial, but in reality, more options lead to complications.

From the “yet another IoT wireless standard” category comes 802.11ah, what the Wi-Fi Alliance is calling HaLow, which is a wireless protocol that operates in the unlicensed 900Mhz spectrum – promising longer range, better penetration through walls, and lower power than 802.11a/b/g/n/ac. That’s great and I look forward to seeing deployments that can verify those claims because range and battery power are two limitations in IoT deployments that are difficult to overcome and could be showstoppers if they require significant investment in time or money to address.

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Is DevOps Ready for EMM and MBaaS Consolidation?

C. Dunlap

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

• 2015 was the year of mobility consolidation including MADP, MBaaS, and PaaS

• Is 2016 the year of consolidation between EMM and MBaaS?

Continued consolidation among mobility technologies is inevitable. We’ve seen significant convergence over the past 18 months between developer-oriented technologies such as MADP and MBaaS; PaaS and MBaaS, and even PaaS and IaaS. So what’s next for 2016? Is DevOps finally ready for consolidation between mobile security and mobile app platforms? There are some rumblings among security and mobile app platform providers and their third-party partners around the growing importance of having a broader mobile portfolio to meet the needs of enterprises. In particular, some MADP vendors may be realizing enterprise mobility management (EMM) capabilities would provide an important area of differentiation in a highly competitive market.

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The Last Foot to the Mouth: Why Your Choice of Headsets Matters

T. Banting

T. Banting

Summary Bullets:

  • Organizations are still failing to recognize the value in deploying specific devices to suit their employees’ varying workstyles.
  • To get the most out of their UC investment and the productivity of their employees, managers should ensure that the last foot to the mouth (i.e., the distance between the headset and the device) is a primary consideration.

As a former British soldier in a Signals regiment, I was told the vital importance of communications by means of a battlefield story. The short version tells of a message being sent back up the chain of command which originally stated: “Send reinforcements, we’re going to advance.” The message was finally received as: “Send three and fourpence, we’re going to a dance.” Regardless of the authenticity of the tale (or indeed the context), clarity remains an essential component of modern day communications. Read more of this post