Fog Computing Feature
November 24, 2014

Cisco Continues to Expand Fog Computing Effort

The fog continues to roll in at Cisco Systems and beyond.

Fog computing, a term coined by Cisco, involves bringing more intelligence to the network edge to allow for more efficient data handling and faster, local decision making. The company supports fog via its IOx platform, which allows third-party operating systems like Linux as well as software applications to run on Cisco IoT platforms.

In recent months, Cisco has expanded the number of routers that support the IOx technology. Cisco introduced new software last month to help customers more easily manage and monitor fog networks. And yesterday at the Fog Computing Conference, Cisco’s Todd Baker said the company will be putting a lot of focus on fog relative to its DevNet developer program and that we’re likely to see some early commercial implementations of fog by June of next year.

Cisco initially introduced IOx in its Connected Grid Router products, but as Baker told us in June, the company expected to add IOx to additional products over time. Today, IOx lives within Cisco’s 819, 88x, and 89x series routers.

Baker describes these routers as small boxes that go at the edge, but he said that in the future fog will expand to include solutions with higher availability of compute and storage. As newer fog platforms with more resources come online, Baker said, organizations will be able to leverage them to do more layering of services at the edge, and more advanced analytics.

“It really is going to increase pretty rapidly,” said Baker, head of fog and IOx products management at Cisco, which was a Diamond sponsor of the inaugural Fog Computing Conference this week in San Jose.

Additionally, Cisco last month introduced the IOx Application Management Module. This software allows for more elegant and affordable remote management of endpoints, other fog resources, and applications at the edge.

Cisco also is moving fog computing forward by providing the appropriate resources to the developer community via its DevNet effort. DevNet is a collection of communities, information, APIs, sandboxes, and support to test solutions in physical environments.

Speaking of the IoT ecosystem, a variety of important players already are leveraging Cisco’s IOx platform in their work. That list includes Bit Stew System (in energy), Davra (in transportation), GE (in manufacturing), Intel, Itron (in electronic meter reading), OSISoft, Rockwell Automation, SK Solutions, smartFOA (in manufacturing, with a focus on doing course-correction on the factory floor), Tieto, and WindRiver. 

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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