Cisco Systems on Monday announced a $1 billion investment in what it calls its Intercloud, a linked chain of datacenters providing services designed to capitalize on the Internet of Things. Cisco has no intention of competing with Amazon Web Services, Google, or Rackspace in supplying general-purpose infrastructure as a set of cloud services. Instead, it has assembled a set of partners to offer a global chain of datacenters linked by a Cisco network to serve as a backbone for the Internet of Things.
"This is not about five public cloud datacenters worldwide," said Favio Gori, director of Cisco cloud marketing, in a description that sounded suspiciously like VMware's vCloud Hybrid Service. Rather, Cisco announced nine partners that will help it build out a set of services on top of OpenStack software to serve as worldwide data-collection points for device data, analytics, and data warehousing.
Gori couldn't put a number on how many datacenters the chain might eventually include, but said it "will leverage Cisco datacenters and those of select partners" to build its chain rapidly. Its own facilities will be combined with those of Australian partner Telstra to put its initial set online in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia "by the end of the year," Gori said in an interview.
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— Charles Babcock is an editor-at-large for InformationWeek.com.