In this ESG On Location video, ESG's Mark Peters and Bob Laliberte provide their insights on the Aruba atmoSPHERE 2018 event, held in Las Vegas. This video includes interviews with 2 Aruba customers.
Read the related ESG Blog by Mark Peters: Aruba Creates an Infectious (in the good sense!) Atmosphere
Read the related ESG Blog by Bob Laliberte: Aruba - Driving Innovation to the Intelligent Edge
Announcer: The following is an ESG On Location video.
Mark: Welcome, as it says on the sign. Also, as it says on the sign, we're here for, actually, Aruba, part of HPE, for their Atmosphere conference. This is the 15th year. We're here in…back in Vegas, and one of the few places on Earth where it's acceptable to be an Airhead. With that, the conference had lots of news, lots of information. My colleague Bob Laliberte, in a second, will take you through some of the main pieces of innovation and announcements that we heard. We were also able to get a couple of interviews with some Aruba clients, and what's really fascinating is when they put real-world examples on top of all the technical capabilities and turn it into something that's really meaningful.
Bob: So over the last two days, there's been a lot of talk about the intelligent edge. But frankly, what I've been most impressed with is about the innovations that they're bringing to the edge. Throughout the keynote, Keerti spent a lot of time talking about all the innovations they brought to bear in 2017, and then followed that up with some of the innovations that they're bringing to the market in 2018 as well.
For an example, in 2017, ClearPass getting its Common Criteria Certification for federal government; talking about OS8 coming out to the market; being able to have dynamic segmentation so that organizations can apply the same role-based security policies that they have in the Wi-Fi environment to the wired environment as well. Another key area that they talked about bringing out was Meridian, where you can do location-based services, so mobile engagement and also asset tracking, another big key to drive additional benefit and value to organizations leveraging an Aruba environment.
Another key product they brought to market in 2017 was a security product calls IntroSpect. This is a artificial intelligent, machine learning program that enables organizations to effectively look for anomalies in their environment and build risk profiles based on the user or device. So something that's really going to help organizations better qualify when there is potential anomalous and malicious activity going on in their environment and stop it extremely quickly.
For 2018, one of the more innovative products they brought to market is a solution called NetInsight. NetInsight also plays on the community that Aruba's worked so hard to build. And the plan is to be able to have organizations that are using NetInsight be able to rank their like environment as compared to other peers, being able to determine whether their environment is running as efficiently as it possibly could or if it needs to be improved.
Another key development for 2018 was their new operating system for the switch environment, something that they call OS-CX. This is really an interesting development because the operating system is essentially a cloud-native software. And what that means, it was built from the ground up using 400 engineers over 2 years to build out a microservices-based software, enabling the organization to rapidly make change, augment and facilitate new ideas and incorporate that into the software quickly and easily. I give them a lot of credit because I believe this is something that's going to be the future of how software and OSs are developed. And I wouldn't be surprised if the CX-type operating system expanded throughout the rest of Aruba's line.
Other important announcement for 2018 include the announcement of SD-WAN capability will be coming out later this year. So everyone's looking to have that branch office in a box, this is one of those steps that allows Aruba to leverage its existing footprint of wired and wireless devices in those campus and branch environments and just augment it with additional capability, allowing those organizations to go directly from the branch to the cloud. So that's something to keep your eyes open for later this year.
Chris: We went from having a lot of calls on Wi-Fi not working to barely any. We walk into buildings now, it's just…we're connected and it's great. PointClickCare is the our main focus of why we've…the main driver of this whole project and that's clinical software to help our nursing staff or PSWs to do a term called point of care, which means, basically you have the PointClickCare app on a iPad or an iPad Mini and you take all their vitals and whichever you need to do to record on that resident goes right into the iPad and it's immediately updated to the database within seconds.
Michael: We have bank auditors that come to our location all the time. So if a vehicle's out there and say we moved it and didn't update the spreadsheet, we have no idea in a sea of 900 vehicles and half of them are white, where that white Toyota is. So by the Beacon technology, you can reference the VIN number to the Beacon and get within a 3-foot to 10-foot radius of where that vehicle is. The other benefit we get from it is the production line itself, with that vehicle coming in, with that Beacon on to it, we can put triggers in for andon [SP] lights or for backflushing materials at point of presence at the station within our ERP system. There's a lot of manpower that goes into that today, to be able to track that and to be able to report on that. So by building in the automated efficiencies with the Beacon, we're able to track analytics on how long it spends at a station, where that vehicle goes, if it goes offline for some reason, if that vehicle progresses and how much per station is accurate time.
Mark: To wrap up from the Aruba Atmosphere event here in Vegas, I've come to the Innovation Zone. Now, the Innovation Zone is obviously the expert hall, but I think actually in this case, it could just as easily be the word that gets applied to Aruba. Perhaps outside these halls and these sorts of events, many people don't realize the extent of innovation that Aruba is making, whether that be in campus switching, in wireless, in security, and obviously, mobility tying all those together. The extent of driving new ways to doing things, new opportunities, new business models is really quite incredible.
For a company that sits as Aruba does, that epicenter of mobility, cloud, edge, security, and wireless, clearly, the upside is very obvious. But there are challenges as well. And the challenge is really can you take a company that has built itself so much on having a different culture, I mention in the intro, the Airheads, and can you maintain that culture, maintain that edge of difference into the future? I know it's corny to say only time will tell, but I suspect we'll see the parent company of HPE adopting just as much from Aruba as Aruba is gaining in terms of traction and market access from HPE.