Cisco has completed the acquisition of ClearAccess, a company that offers telco management software that competes with legacy systems in an age of mobile video. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
ClearAccess provides software to service providers for the provisioning and management of residential and mobile devices. Cisco picked up the software and the talent, which is being integrated into the Cisco Network Management Technology Group.
As Cisco sees it, service providers are faced with growing network complexity, exploding video and data traffic , and an increasing number of devices connected to their networks. With the proliferation of these devices, Cisco has noticed a clear trend: Service providers are looking for ways to immediately lower operating expense while delivering and enabling new services.
Beefing Up Cisco Prime
Jamie Lerner, vice president and general manager of Cisco Network Management Technology Group's Service Provider Applications division, said the ClearAccess acquisition will accelerate Cisco's software architectural advancements in mobility, cloud and managed devices, and video.
"ClearAccess provides a critical technology that will advance Cisco's mission to offer service providers a complete set of tools to manage their networks, within the home and across any connected device, amid the ongoing proliferation in network traffic," he explained.
Cisco believes ClearAccess' management and software capabilities will augment Cisco Prime -- Cisco's network management software portfolio -- by offering service providers a set of tools for managing the connected home, including monitoring and managing bandwidth usage, parental controls, diagnostics and analytics .
Driving Network Visibility
We caught up with Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst at ZK Research, to get his take on how important Cisco's latest acquisition is in the grand networking scheme. He told us that with the impending mobile traffic tsunami, it's vital for operators to have a clear understanding of what is going on in their network.
"The first step in building a robust scalable network is to know your network. Very few companies know their network," Kerravala said. "ClearAccess goes a long way in helping companies know their network."
Kerravala has noticed a recent shift -- more companies are relying on their network vendor to provide management software. Part of the reason, he said, is that legacy management tools like CA's Unicenter, HP 's OpenView and IBM's Tivoli are past their prime, built in an era with mostly static assets.
"The world has changed. When you think about crossing wired-wireless boundaries and virtual-physical boundaries, it requires a much greater level of knowledge of the network to manage it effectively," Kerravala said. "That's one of the reasons service providers rely on their network partner to provide their tools, and I think that's why Cisco made that acquisition."