IBM and Cisco will work jointly to take Watson supercomputer-powered analytics to devices linked to networks, thus providing real-time analysis of what’s occurring across networks.
Financial terms were not disclosed.
The tech giants, both of which have a big campus in Research Triangle Park, announced their partnership Thursday.
“Melding Watson with the networking giant’s knowledge of edge devices and end points,” according to tech news service ZD Net.
Among early targets are industries such as energy, mining, manufacturing and shipping. Bell Canada, the Port of Cartagena, and Silverhook Powerboats are already clients.
“These enterprises have a bevy of end points, but limited bandwidth,” ZD Net noted.
- More coverage: Cisco, IBM execs explain the deal.]
Here’s how IBM (NYSE: IBM) and Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO) describe the reasoning behind the partnership:
“To maintain a competitive and operational advantage, businesses need to analyze IoT data as soon as it’s available—no matter where it’s created—to gain insights that can be put into action. This can be challenging for companies with remote operations in environments with intermittent connectivity. In these situations, agility is impaired if the information needs to be sent to a data center, or even the cloud, for analysis.
“To address this challenge, IBM and Cisco are teaming up to combine the business analytics and cognitive capabilities of the IBM Watson IoT platform and Cisco’s expertise in hyper-distributed IoT networks and edge and fog analytics. This enables immediate analytics at the edge of the network while also collecting high value information for longer term analysis in the cloud.”
Cisco has invested in all things IoT, with Executive Chairman John Chambers leading the way. He touts IoT as a multi-trillion-dollar opportunity.
IBM also has recently stepped up its IoT efforts under a strategy put together by Chair/CEO Virginia Rometty which puts more emphasis on Watson, cognitive computing and analytics.
“While we have a focus on Watson as a cloud-based system, for certain clients with remote or autonomous operations we need something else,” Harriet Green, general manager of IBM Watson IOT, told TechCrunch in an interview. “Shipping, mining and many factories all operate at the edge of the computer network, where bandwidth might be expensive or unreliable.”
By tying in Watson with Cisco routers that already run Cisco Analytics, TechCrunch says networks can be linked more effectively with Watson’s artificial intelligence.
“As a result, industrial organizations and companies in remote locations can apply advanced analytics (cognitive, predictive, and machine learning) to sensor readings where it’s needed most, whether at the point of collection for immediate analysis or in the cloud for more long term study,” Green wrote in a blog post.
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