Interactive Intelligence to host “Pitfalls of TCPA” industry web event

By admin, 17 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

Interactive Intelligence Group Inc., a global provider of software and services designed to improve the customer experience, is hosting a no-cost Web event* titled, “The Pitfalls of TCPA and Its Impact on Your Business,” to be held Tuesday, April 29 at 11:30 a.m. Eastern time (EDT).

Already attracting more than 650 registrants, this 75-minute webcast will evaluate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act’s (TCPA) impact on up-selling, telemarketing and collections.

Webcast presenters include Mike Bevel, editor of inside ARM; Martha Buyer, telecommunications attorney; and Chad McCormick, product manager for Interactive Intelligence. An extensive Q&A will follow the Web presentation, during which Bevel, Buyer and McCormick will answer live audience questions.

“Today, TCPA rules span autodialing, texting, calls to cell phones, faxing, certain landline calls, express consent, and more,” said Joe Staples, chief marketing officer for Interactive Intelligence. “We designed this webcast to help organizations use technology and best practices to improve TCPA adherence, while maximizing performance.”

To register for this webcast, visit:

*This Web event and its associated content and materials are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. Interactive Intelligence does not assume any liability for any errors or omissions or for how the Web event and associated content and materials are used or interpreted. You are responsible for obtaining advice from your attorney or other relevant professionals.

Veeam announces top EMEA partners at ProPartner of the Year Awards 2013

By admin, 17 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

Veeam® Software, innovative provider of Data Protection for the Modern Data Center™, has recognised the accomplishments of their top EMEA partners by announcing the winners of the Veeam ProPartner of the Year Awards.

The winners will be honored at Veeam’s 2013 EMEA Partner Awards ceremony, the company’s exclusive two-day event, held in Istanbul, Turkey, 15-16 May 2014. During this prestigious, invite-only event, Veeam and its top ProPartners will evolve new partnership strategies and discuss 2014 milestones at roundtable talks.

“Today’s businesses no longer have tolerance for downtime, IT failures or lack of business continuity,” said Gilles Pommier, EMEA Channel Vice President at Veeam Software. “Our most successful partners are those who recognise this and the evolution of the modern data center, while also understanding its impact on the always-on business. Our award-winning Veeam ProPartner Programme provides the tools partners need to become trusted advisors to their customers, gain exclusive access to resources that will drive license and service business, create new opportunities, increase profitability, and help close deals faster. Our partners’ success is our mission. We aren’t successful unless we’re making our partners successful. As we prepare to announce our 100,000th customer, we recognise that milestone is a result of our top partners, many of which we are recognising with these awards.”

Veeam’s EMEA ProPartner of the Year Award winners were selected in three categories: Best Growth, Best Performer, and Best Distributor. The Best Growth ProPartner of the Year showed the most dramatic increase in Veeam year-over-year sales. The Best Performer ProPartner of the Year generated the greatest revenue. The Distributor of the Year had the most success in regards to sales, acquisition of new Veeam ProPartners, and marketing activities.

Categories and winners of Veeam’s EMEA ProPartner of the Year Awards:

Best Growth ProPartner of the Year

  • Dorcom Med, EMEA – Israel
  • Agile Software, NEMEA – Netherlands
  • Nexpert AG, CEMEA – Switzerland
  • Naitways, SEMEA – France

Best Performer ProPartner of the Year

  • Bechtle, EMEA – Germany
  • Softcat UK, NEMEA – UK
  • Comparex, CEMEA – Germany
  • SCC, SEMEA – France

Best Distributor of the Year

  • Also, EMEA – Switzerland
  • Azlan, NEMEA – Belgium
  • Ingram Micro, CEMEA – Germany
  • Azlan, SEMEA – France

“Veeam is well recognised as the must-have solution in virtual environments by the end-customer. Although Veeam is relatively new in the Azlan portfolio, it picked up rapidly and has turned into a strong performer thanks to the complementary fit with our other vendors, such as HP and Cisco for infrastructure and VMware and Microsoft for virtualisation.

As a Value Add Distributor Azlan looks forward to further develop the market together with Veeam by offering even more cross vendor solutions suited both for the SMB and the Enterprise market. Veeam is a fast, dynamic and reliable partner for the Azlan customers in Belgium and Luxembourg. This award is a thumbs-up for the dedication of our enthusiastic Azlan Enterprise Software team”, said Patrick Steenssens, Managing Director, Azlan Belgium.

Check Point holds top spot in worldwide combined Firewall and UTM appliance market for 2013

By admin, 17 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

Check Point Software Technologies Ltd., a worldwide leader in securing the Internet, recently announced that the company held the number one vendor position in worldwide combined Firewall and UTM appliance revenue for the full year (FY) 2013[1], according to the latest IDC Tracker research data.

Data in the IDC Worldwide Security Appliance Tracker indicated:

  • Check Point led the global market in combined Firewall and UTM appliance revenue share for FY 2013.
  • Check Point is the leader in combined Firewall and UTM factory revenue in both the U.S. and Western Europe for FY 2013.

“Our continued market leadership in 2013, and recognition by IDC, is a testament to our innovative technology, rock-solid partner network and unmatched customer focus,” said Amnon Bar-Lev, president at Check Point Software Technologies. “The threat landscape continues to grow more complex, and our customers rely on both our world-class hardware and our full-scale security solutions to help them be more secure. With our revolutionary advances in security infrastructure, such as Software-defined Protection, our global threat prevention and intelligence capabilities, and best-in-class appliances that scale from small businesses to enterprise data centres, we are very confident of our continued success in 2014.”

IDC defines firewalls as appliances that have as their primary function general-purpose filtering of networking traffic through packet filtering, stateful inspection or proxy. UTM appliances combine at a minimum network firewalling, network intrusion detection and prevention, and gateway antivirus (AV) onto a single device, though other functions may be included as well.

Check Point has been a leader in the firewall market since its founding in 1993. Entering the security appliance business in 2006, the company has aggressively grown its enterprise hardware business. In 2013, Check Point introduced eight new appliances, protecting small businesses with the 600 appliance, and securing data centres with the recent launch of the 13500 appliance.

Check Point’s 16 security appliances deliver powerful turnkey systems for deploying and optimising Check Point’s award-winning Software Blade Architecture, which include four predefined security packages: Next Generation Firewall, Next Generation Threat Prevention, Next Generation Data Protection and Next Generation Secure-Web Gateway. By consolidating security into a single, integrated solution, organisations of all sizes have the flexibility to customise their security infrastructure based on the protection and performance needed in any environment.

[1] IDC Worldwide Quarterly Security Appliance Tracker, March 6, 2014

Leading organizations invest in BlackBerry Enterprise Mobility solutions

By admin, 17 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

BlackBerry Limited (NASDAQ: BBRY; TSX: BB), a world leader in mobile communications, today announced that several leading Canadian customers are deploying BlackBerry® Enterprise Service 10 (BES10), including: Volker Stevin, City of Waterloo and Samuel, Son & Co., Limited.

According to J. Gold Associates¹, over the next year or two the average enterprise user will employ three to five personal devices and use eight to 10 business applications. With the growing need for enterprise users to connect to at least five different enterprise systems, such as VPN, email and the cloud, to perform work-related tasks, the management and security of devices will become increasingly more complex to control without the right enterprise mobility management (EMM) solution.

Migrating to BlackBerry’s EMM solution allows organizations to seamlessly manage devices, operating systems, applications and security. “Our enterprise customers know they can trust BlackBerry because they’ve long counted on our mobility solutions to arm their employees with the best tools to help them be more productive and collaborative – all without ever having to worry about the security of their data,” said John Sims, President, Global Enterprise Services at BlackBerry.

Volker Stevin, one of the largest heavy civil and highway maintenance contractors in Western Canada, is deploying BES10 and BlackBerry 10 smartphones as the company’s sole EMM solution. “We have hundreds of employees on and off the field, and they all require one thing – fast, secure and consistent communication tools,” said Mike Philip, Wireless Program Manager, Volker Stevin. “We evaluated other MDM solutions like MobileIron and AirWatch, but BES10 was a clear winner in terms of being more user-friendly and cost-effective. BlackBerry 10 smartphones and BES10 allow us to improve operational efficiency with security capabilities that are second to none.”

The City of Waterloo continues its long-standing partnership with BlackBerry in innovating and injecting new ideas and technologies to provide valued services that help build the best quality of life for its citizens. In addition to deploying BES10 and BlackBerry 10 smartphones for its workforce, the City of Waterloo also worked with BlackBerry to develop the Ping Street mobile application on the BlackBerry OS platform. The first-of-its-kind mobile application provides Waterloo citizens real-time access to location-based information including garbage and recycling calendars, construction detours, road closures and more.

The City of Waterloo has also embraced BBM™ to stay connected and share secure real-time updates and news with its employees during emergency situations. BBM™ Groups used during emergencies sped up response time and drastically improved collaboration and critical communication during emergency incidents. “BlackBerry 10 devices are by far some of the best business smartphones available. While they deliver tangible productivity benefits and iron-clad security standards, our whole crew from planners to bylaw personnel to firefighters can also enjoy all the benefits of a cutting-edge device with all the enterprise apps they need at their fingertips,” said Max Min, Director of Information Management and Technology Services, City of Waterloo.

Samuel, Son & Co., Limited, Canada’s oldest and largest metals service center and metal manufacturing company, has chosen BES10 and BlackBerry 10 smartphones as their core end-to-end business mobility solution. “We’re confident that our investment in BlackBerry 10 is the best mobility solution for our workforce,” said Bob Carter, Chief Information Officer, Samuel, Son & Co., Limited. “The powerful combination of BlackBerry 10 smartphones and BES10 offers us an integrated mobile device and server solution that meets our highest security and productivity needs. BlackBerry also offers a best-in-class customer service experience and product training support, which makes deploying BlackBerry 10 a great value proposition overall.”

The BES10 multi-platform solution allows customers to manage BlackBerry, iOS and Android devices from a single, highly secure, reliable platform. Around the globe, nearly 33,000 BES10 commercial and test servers have been installed to date. To further accelerate migration to BES10, BlackBerry launched the new EZ Pass offer that provides free migration for existing BlackBerry customers or those on any other mobility management platform. The EZ Pass offer will be available from March 31, 2014 through January 31, 2015. Please visit to apply for the program.

For more information about BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10, please visit:

¹SOURCE: “BES10: Enterprise Mobility Management for a Multi-Platform World.”
J. Gold and Associates Research Reportö

LSD Information Technology – doing IT differently

By admin, 17 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

LSD Information Technology, a member of the Aptronics Group of Companies, has a different approach to IT. For the past 12 years, LSD has been servicing the business sector and establishing itself as a lynchpin in the enterprise open source field, providing superior and reliable solutions to their clients.

Having seen the popularity of open source soar over the years, LSD Managing Director, Sven Lesicnik, believes that open source has become the new way of doing business. “In the open source market, it is the community that develops software using open source licences. Because it’s not one company developing the software, but a diverse variety of experts collaborating, the types of products coming out are far more innovative and contemporary.”

According to Lesicnik, businesses can’t afford to ignore open source because of the cost savings and other benefits it offers. “There is no vendor lock-in and the strict open standards ensure collaboration in order to develop technologically-superior software.”

Open source promotes a culture of innovative thinking, sharing and collaboration, and that’s exactly what LSD strives to do Lesicnik says. “Just like the technology we use, we strive to be creative, different and forward thinking. We pride ourselves on our ability to fuse being fun with being professional, because, as our email signatures attest, ‘there is no charge for awesomeness’.”

To learn more, please visit:

Kaspersky Internet Security blocks all threats in AV-Test trial

By admin, 16 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

Kaspersky Lab’s flagship product for home users Kaspersky Internet Security blocked every threat in the Bi-Monthly Certification January-February 2014 testing conducted by AV-Test, an independent German research center. The solution claimed first place, achieving a score of 17.5 points out of a possible 18.

AV-TEST’s procedures evaluate security solutions using only the default settings. The antivirus databases of the products are updated immediately prior to the test. In addition, the solutions can access their vendor cloud services to obtain the latest information about new threats. These test settings accurately recreate the operating conditions on most home computers.

A total of 25 products from different vendors participated in the testing. The main selection of threats for Bi-Monthly Certification January-February 2014 included about 17,800 widespread samples. A further 151 relatively obscure samples were also included to enable a better assessment of the effectiveness of protection mechanisms.

Kaspersky Internet Security successfully neutralised 100% of the threats in both collections. When working with legitimate software, the solution committed only one false positive, outstripping the results of the other participants. The final results saw Kaspersky Lab’s solution receive 17.5 points – the best score in the competition, and one that only two rival products could match.

“The advantage of AV-TEST’s methodology is that the test results indicate which security solution performs most effectively in the type of conditions that most people encounter in their day-to-day Internet use. Kaspersky Internet Security is consistently among the leaders, reliably blocking threats without producing false positives,” commented Oleg Ishanov, Director of the Anti-Malware Research Unit, Kaspersky Lab.

The testing was performed on a 64-bit version of Windows 7 Service Pack, Service Pack 1. Kaspersky Lab products regularly participate and come first in tests conducted by independent laboratories. In 2012-2013, the company’s products came out on top in these tests more frequently than any other security software vendor.

Mad Monkey gets into the swing of things with Sage Pastel solution

By admin, 16 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

When Sonya Jacobs established a new business called Mad Monkey in November 2012, she knew that a good payroll and accounting package could help her to save time, improve customer service and manage her cash flow tightly.

Sage Pastel Accounting’s My Business Online and My Payroll Online turned out to be the answer to her business’s needs. “I was familiar with Pastel because I’d completed a course on the software in 2006, and was leaning towards Sage Pastel because it’s the product my accountant uses” she says. “Then, when I tried the online version of the product, I knew I’d found the solution that would support my business through its start-up phase.”

Jacobs founded Mad Monkey—which makes corporate clothing and gifts, personal protective wear, outdoor and sporting accessories, and related products—out of her passion for creating goods and interacting with clients. Like many small business owners, she has plenty to do in a limited timeframe and would rather spend her hours interacting with customers than on doing administration. This is where the Sage Pastel Accounting products have played an invaluable role in her business. The software is easy to use and allows her to do tasks such as invoicing and producing pay slips quickly and easily. The software provided an easy learning curve, so Jacobs didn’t need to invest precious time and money in learning to use the package.

The cloud based solutions kept fully up to date with security patches and new legislation with no effort required from the end-user. Best of all, it’s available for a modest monthly cost, preserving capital that Jacobs could invest in growing her business.

“I’d totally forgotten what I’d learnt about the software six years ago, but it was very easy to teach myself how to use the online version,” Jacobs says. “I really enjoy using the software because it is so simple and convenient.”

Because Sage Pastel Accounting’s My Business Online is online, Jacobs can access the system wherever she is. Customer invoices, receipts, supplier invoices, returns, and payments can all be managed from nearly anywhere there’s an Internet connection. “I’m on the road nearly all the time, so it’s really convenient for me to be able to log in and send an invoice to a customer who needs it from wherever I am,” she says. “Sage Pastel My Business Online is a really affordable and convenient option for businesses that are just starting up.”

Dell gives partners additional growth opportunities by investing in EMEA PartnerDirect Program

By admin, 16 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment
  • The next step in the evolution of Dell’s EMEA channel business creates a simplified go-to-market model with strong end-to-end support for the customer
  • Key incentives include expansion of Dell Financial Services, increased access to demo equipment and new rebate levels for software partners
  • Dell affirms next step in its plans to grow and strengthen EMEA channel business above industry average rates
  • Expansion of ProSupport Plus through partners across EMEA

Dell has announced a series of new programs and incentives to significantly strengthen its commitment to its Dell EMEA Channel Partners. The wide range of initiatives has been designed to support EMEA partners to grow their businesses more profitably with Dell.

Dell is offering a selection of programs specifically targeted to partners including increased access to equipment, a suite of tailored financial services and a two percent rebate on software sales for Dell Premier Partners.

New PartnerDirect Programs and Incentives

As part of its ongoing commitment to its EMEA channel partners Dell is announcing a series of new programs to drive joint business:

  • End-To-End Sales Support: Dell’s sales force will focus on assisting partners to close business with products from its portfolio suited to meet end customer needs, including Dell PowerEdge servers, storage, networking, software, thin client, workstations and Dell SecureWorks. The company will offer partners expanded rebates for multiple products sold in one deal.
  • Coverage Models: Deal Registration will continue to allow partners to identify all direct opportunities with end customers. Channel partners will also benefit from leads provided by Dell, encouraging a channel-led approach for specifically targeted end customers that would benefit from channel partner involvement. This will enable partners to identify and target specific companies with the assurance that Dell will not pro-actively pursue such leads, although end customers still have the choice of buying directly from Dell or through a partner.
  • Expanded Access to Dell Equipment: Dell has confirmed a six-fold increase its investment in demonstration units and lab gear available to its channel partners across EMEA. The company is applying dedicated budget and resources to make sure partners have the tools, training and products they need to win new business. On top of this initiative, partners can benefit from special conditions using Dell Financial Services (DFS) to lease Dell demonstration equipment, enabling partners to conserve cash and pay as they demonstrate and win new business.
  • Increased Access to Finance: Dell Financial Services (DFS) will offer a channel financing program across EMEA to help partners grow their Dell business. The program typically gives qualified Premier and Preferred partners, as well as Dell’s distributors, an additional 15 days credit and a higher credit limit. Channel Financing offers a cash management tool and on demand financing to help relieve working capital pressures on partners and enable faster channel growth. The new program complements DFS end user financing: used together the combination of a financed sale with financed supply will dramatically improve a Channel Partner’s cash flow.
  • Further Rebate on Software Sales: Dell Premier Partners in EMEA will have the opportunity to claim a two percent rebate on software sales in earned competencies. The offer will apply to sales of solutions within the four software competencies: security, information management, data protection, and systems management.

Enterprise Solutions Expand Channel Opportunities

Dell continuously introduces new solutions to help customers successfully navigate the rapidly changing IT landscape and prepare their data centres for the future. These solutions give Dell Channel Partners more opportunities to expand their existing customer relationships and to establish new ones. These channel-friendly solutions include:

  • Dell PowerEdge VRTX integrates servers, storage, networking and management into a single office-optimised chassis the size of a tower server, putting the power and function of a complete data centre into one small package. PowerEdge VRTX has won many industry awards including its recognition as Server of the Year for 2013.
  • The Dell Storage portfolio is designed with built-in efficiency, resilience and agility to help customers access the right data at the right time at the right price. Dell’s approach makes IT storage more economical, offering all-flash performance at the price of disk solutions.
  • Dell Networking offers open, standards-based architectures for maximum interoperability and choice, better-together solutions engineered to improve IT efficiency and cost. Its easy-to-use software tools streamline and simplify operations and service delivery, enabling customers to save money, grow and maximise productivity.
  • Dell Software makes it easy to securely manage and protect applications, systems, devices and data to help organisations of all sizes make the most of their technology. Dell’s simple yet powerful software – combined with its hardware and services – provides scalable, integrated solutions to drive value and accelerate results.
  • The Dell Thin Client portfolio offers a wide selection of secure, reliable, cost-effective thin clients. It’s designed to easily integrate into any virtualized or web-based infrastructure, while meeting the budget and performance requirements for any application.
  • Dell Workstations are powerful tower, rack and mobile workstations, featuring exceptional graphics capabilities and storage capacity along with design features that enable easy expansion.
  • Dell SecureWorks information security services help customers protect IT assets, comply with regulations and reduce costs — without having to build internal security expertise from scratch.

Stronger EMEA Channel Focus

In the next step of its EMEA Channel business evolution, Dell is changing its leadership structure and improving its go-to-market model, to focus on providing greater choice and value to our end customers and growing our Channel business.

By reshaping its EMEA channel sales and segment sales teams under a single leadership, Dell is focused on enabling its EMEA partners to benefit from a more consistent, predictable system allowing faster decision-making for deal registrations and an internal Dell culture that continues to reward Dell sales staff for winning Dell business across its direct and indirect sales channels. Now more than six years old, Dell PartnerDirect continues to develop and enhance its offering based on partner feedback. The program accounts for approximately half of Dell’s commercial revenue in EMEA and is growing at a multiple to the market. PartnerDirect has been lauded by the industry with hundreds of awards in its tenure and currently includes more than 48000 EMEA partners, with thousands of Dell Preferred and Premier Partners.

ProSupport Plus

Today Dell announced that it is expanding ProSupport Plus availability through its partners across EMEA. Dell ProSupport Plus proactively improves the performance and stability of critical enterprise IT systems.

PartnerDirect Program Update Availability

Program enhancements are targeted to launch across EMEA during 2014. Specific details will be communicated directly to Dell’s PartnerDirect partners as they are available.


“We are pleased to pilot the Dell Channel financing program in the UK” said Karen McInerney, Group Financial Controller, Computacenter. “We’re using the program in the UK and Germany now and France will follow later in the year. The enrolment process is very simple and straightforward. The Channel Financing programme will enable future growth with Dell to be more profitable for Computacenter”

“Dell has a long-running commitment to its channel partners in the EMEA region and we continue to offer them the tools they need to help drive sales and expand,” said Brad Pulford, Dell enterprise solutions group director. “We recognise the importance of looking after our partners; we are investing in them now to make their business more successful going forward. With this new series of programs and incentives, we are making it easier for our partners to work with Dell sales teams, giving them a cost advantage over competitors. Combined, these benefits will enable Dell’s EMEA channel program to become even stronger and to deliver IT solutions to its customers more efficiently than ever before.”

Converged infrastructure gains traction in the local market

By admin, 16 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

By Roelof Louw, Senior Sales Consultant IT at T-Systems in South Africa

For the past few years, the Cloud has been one of the fastest-growing technologies in the IT space, offering many benefits to organisations of all sizes. However, due to security concerns around the Public Cloud, many large enterprises have instead investigated the option of the Private Cloud. This in itself has proved to be a challenging concept, as successful deployment of a Private Cloud requires the four main components – hardware, software, storage and networking – to work together seamlessly. Obtaining best of breed solutions in these four areas often requires a combination of technology from different vendors, which in turn requires a high level of skill and expertise to implement, integrate and support.

Converged infrastructure has arisen to address this challenge, offering a pre-engineered system that brings together best of breed solutions across the four key components into one single unit that can be seamlessly integrated into the IT environment. Converged infrastructure not only simplifies the deployment of the Private Cloud, it offers enterprises a number of additional benefits, and as such is gaining massive traction in the local market.

Converged infrastructure solutions combine servers, storage, software, networking and services into one package. This drives the concept of IT as a utility, enabling enterprises to acquire a ‘boxed’ solution from a single partner that delivers the best of breed technologies that are critical to the Private Cloud. These highly optimised IT systems offer pre-integrated resource functionality in a single solution, shipping with hardware infrastructure already optimised for use with servers, storage and networking systems. This enables more efficient deployment of virtualisation while at the same time reducing costs. Firmware updates are pre-tested on all IT resources, reducing the requirement for engineering resources and skills onsite, and procurement time can be reduced from weeks to a matter of days.

In addition, pre-integrated and optimised systems ensure efficient resource utilisation, further driving business value. Systems can be up and running in short order, and can be scaled quickly as workloads grow or new applications are added. This in turn drives greater agility and productivity. Converged infrastructure also provides a simplified path to integration, reducing the complexity of IT infrastructure, and delivers centralised management, monitoring and reporting.

On-going operational costs are thus reduced through simplified management and centralisation, and reduced requirements for in-house support can also dramatically reduce costs. In addition, because the converged infrastructure vendor or partner has invested significant time and effort on upfront integration and pre-engineering, the need for integration support is minimal. This means that return on investment can be improved, along with the benefit of fast and simplified implementation.

Many factors are driving the uptake of converged infrastructure. These include constant cost pressures on IT budgets, the increasing need for efficient IT solutions, and the growing need for enterprises to benefit from the Cloud, big data, mobility and collaboration solutions while curbing costs. As a result, this technology is seeing increased adoption globally, and South Africa is no different. Converged infrastructure solutions make Cloud deployment easier and faster, and enable virtualisation to be implemented more effectively. This in turn drives the ability to take up technologies around the other megatrends of big data, mobility and collaboration. At the same time, converged infrastructure increases business value and reduces risk, while providing a single point of contact during both implementation and support.

By enabling the delivery of technologies that assist with agility and more effective service to customers both internal and external, converged solutions are driving the all-important concept of zero distance – closing the gap between a business and all of its customers and transforming IT from a cost centre into a driver of real business value.

Ruckus unveils Smart Access Management public Cloud Service

By admin, 16 kwietnia, 2014, No Comment

Ruckus Wireless, Inc. (NYSE: RKUS) has unveiled the first Cloud-based Smart Wi-Fi Access Management Service (SAMS) that combines the scale, efficiencies and cost-effectiveness of Cloud-based services with best-in-class Smart Wi-Fi products and technology to give organisations the power to now easily design, manage and monetise Wi-Fi services from an intuitive ‘point-and-click’ Cloud-based portal.

The first of a new breed of Ruckus Smart Wireless Services (SWS), SAMS enhances the guest experience by letting businesses quickly create and customise wireless hotspots for single or multiple sites without building extensive data centers, or deploying expensive and cumbersome infrastructure typically required for offering managed Wi-Fi access services. SWS is a flexible framework for layering value-added software services such as Cloud-based wireless access (SAMS) and Ruckus SPoT location services, as well as virtualised management software over carrier-class Smart Wi-Fi infrastructure products and platforms to give organisations unprecedented flexibility to build reliable, scalable and robust Smart Wi-Fi solutions based on their specific requirements, and to enable channel partners to easily migrate to recurring revenue-based service models.

Unlike other public wireless access alternatives, SAMS combines all the necessary infrastructure components and service elements into a single solution. Ideal for any organisation or venue offering managed public wireless access, such as shopping malls, stadiums, convention centers, airports and retail outlets, SAMS transforms the traditional model for offering managed Wi-Fi services by moving local network infrastructure, such as WLAN controllers, authentication servers, captive portals, advertising engines and content filtering into the Cloud as a service.

“The benefits the Cloud brings to the wireless access market is undeniable,” said Selina Lo, president and CEO of Ruckus Wireless. “Beyond delivering world-class Wi-Fi infrastructure solutions, with SAMS, Ruckus continues to give its partners and customers the ability to realise greater value from Wi-Fi through innovative new services such as Cloud-based access, location services, rich analytics and the ability to begin monetising their networks.”

In a new report¹, IDC estimates that the worldwide enterprise market for Cloud-managed WLAN infrastructure and managed services is expected to reach $2.5 billion by 2018. The report states that “Cloud computing has shifted the paradigm of enterprise IT from being hardware driven to service driven. As more enterprises seek new ways to optimise existing resources and build capacity at the network edge, expect to see the rise in Cloud-managed Wi-Fi adoption continue for years to come.”

According to the report, Enterprises are searching for increasingly sophisticated network functionalities despite continually tight budgets and limitations around infrastructure, space, and staffing. Moreover, many Enterprises need a singular, centrally managed and controlled network for branch locations that are geographically dispersed.

As WLAN management shifts to the Cloud, venue owners now have access to cost-effective, easy to manage enterprise grade wireless at a lower total cost ownership (TCO). SAMS delivers flexible deployment and management options through a simple, Web-based portal that allows highly customised Wi-Fi access services to be defined and created in a matter of minutes, and provided at a low TCO.

Customers simply define the attributes of the wireless access service required at a given venue, and then have an authorised Ruckus Big Dog channel partner turn on the services for them, either for existing Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi customers and/or those who desire to keep a traditional wireless LAN (WLAN) configuration (onsite subscription) or after just installing the requisite number of Ruckus ZoneFlex access points (APs) onsite (hosted subscription). SAMS does the rest. In turn, the venue benefits from best-in-class wireless connectivity at each site, supported by an easy-to-use Cloud-based platform that scales on demand within a ‘pay as you grow,’ fully managed Cloud service.

Opening the Door to Recurring Revenue Services for Valued Added Resellers

Tailored for venues looking to more easily and conveniently offer users a better wireless access experience without the need for multiple services from multiple vendors and extensive IT staff or infrastructure equipment at every site, SAMS also represents a compelling new managed services opportunity for channel partners looking to become managed service providers (MSPs), by creating recurring service revenues with minimal investment.

From a single, easy-to-navigate Web-based console in SAMS, channel partners can now easily create, customise and manage a wireless access service on behalf of a wide range of customers. SAMS can be set up and managed either by the channel partner or the customer’s own staff with a minimum level of IT expertise, through the use of intuitive Web-based management tools, including flexible and customisable advertising tools that are simple and easy to create and set-up.

Once the service is configured through a simple wizard driven setup, Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi access points automatically “phone home” to register with the Cloud controller. However, unlike other Cloud-based Wi-Fi services, if the access points can’t reach the Cloud controller, local access services are not disrupted. Ongoing management of SAMS and monitoring of access points and clients, along with historical reporting, is provided through a comprehensive network portal that gives administrators a wide range of controls, such as creating AP zones, templates and management domains for different customers.

At the heart of SAMS is the Ruckus SmartCel Gateway (SCG), key Ruckus controller technology hosted within the Cloud in partnership with Global Reach (see related release). The Ruckus SCG is a carrier-class wireless management platform that provides unprecedented scalability and secure multi-tenancy support.

Unmatched Deployment Flexibility and Remote Control Over Wireless Access Services

SAMS works transparently with Ruckus ZoneFlex Smart Wi-Fi access points and/or on-premises Ruckus ZoneDirector WLAN controllers for unmatched deployment flexibility, compared with existing hotspot services. All requisite authentication services, WLAN administration and service management tools are integrated directly within SAMS.

When configuring SAMS, customers have complete control over service branding and functionality, such as the ability to enable authentication with popular social media sites like Facebook and Twitter. Service enforcement controls can be used to limit the length and number of sessions, restrict bandwidth consumption or filter access to specific content.

To further customise access services and enrich the user experience, SAMS provides a rich set of user analytics that can be collected over periods of time. Each venue is provided with a view into their wireless access service from a single Web-based dashboard. From this dashboard, customers have at-a-glance information such as popular registration methods, total user sessions and visits, new and returning users visits, registration by device type, age group and gender, and the most popular devices being used on the network, as well as the average duration of user sessions.

Managed Wireless Access Simplified

The process to enable managed wireless access with SAMS is simple. Once logged into the service portal, customers simply create a new site, configure access settings, customise the registration page and user journey and upload any ads or message to be displayed.

¹Source: IDC, Cloud-Managed WiFi Set to Grow to $2.5 Billion by 2018, Doc #247738, Mar 2014

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