Cisco Introduces Automated Mobility-Management Platform

By IOT Journal

An extension of Cisco Jasper's IoT platform enables enterprises to automate the connectivity and management of corporate mobile devices, in addition to IoT devices.

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When an enterprise has hundreds or thousands of employees with business mobile devices like smartphones or tablets, managing and monitoring the connectivity, data usage, and general operation of those mobile devices can be a challenge that leads to high enterprise mobility costs.

Cisco today announced the availability of a new platform, Control Center for Mobile Enterprise, that automates the management of enterprise mobile services and devices. The solution, which is an extension of the Cisco Jasper Control Center IoT service platform, provides enterprises with faster delivery of services, lower operational costs and predictable telecom bills. Control Center for Mobile Enterprise is directly integrated with service provider networks and systems, enabling real-time usage visibility, automated cost control and enterprise-grade self-serve management of mobile services and assets.

“Management of any connected device consists of common challenges like unpredictable service costs and inefficient management processes, and this is especially true for business mobile phones and tablets,” said Marc Austin, Head of Mobile Enterprise Products at Cisco® Jasper. “Cisco Jasper has partnered with over 50 service providers worldwide to enable enterprises to automatically connect and manage their IoT services, and now we are extending the same proven capabilities to business mobile devices.”

Enterprises have provided their employees with mobile devices like smartphones and tablets for well over a decade now, yet the management of these devices and services remains largely reactive and manual, with little use of technology and automation. The result is anything from delayed services, surprise telecom charges, high operational and support costs, and a poor employee experience.

For example, adding a travel plan, tracking devices, and allocating costs to the right cost center are manual operational tasks that require employees, IT teams, and employee helpdesk teams to waste an extraordinary amount of time. Mobility management is fraught with such inefficient processes, and enterprises are struggling to reduce their mobility total cost of ownership (TCO).

“In the next two years, business smartphones will grow to over 1 billion subscribers globally,” said Jeff Orr, Research Director at ABI Research. “There is an immediate market need for solutions that help enterprises automate device connectivity, usage accounting, and service management, to curtail unnecessary mobility expenses.”

Control Center for Mobile Enterprise utilizes Cisco Jasper’s years of experience in connecting and managing IoT services to solve these critical challenges facing mobile enterprises today. The platform’s deep integration with mobile operator networks and systems delivers unique value to enterprises, including:

Real-time visibility into usage and charges – Typically enterprises don’t find out that their employees went over their designated smartphone or tablet data usage limits until 30-60 days after the fact. With Control Center for Mobile Enterprise they know how much data is being consumed by each enterprise device on the platform, and how much it is costing, right this instant. With this complete transparency, enterprises can take action to prevent employees from exceeding their data usage limits before it is too late.

Automated controls over costs and services – Enterprises spend a lot of time sifting through past invoices in order to figure out how to avoid surprise charges in the next month’s phone bill, an approach that is reactive and ineffective. With Cisco Jasper’s platform, enterprises can, for example, create and enforce a roaming policy that automatically upgrades employees who are about to hit their travel plan’s data limit to the next travel plan level. Another example is the ability to automatically detect and suspend any SIM that is removed from a device to prevent fraudulent use.

Enterprise-grade self-serve management – For most enterprises, managing mobile services and devices and supporting mobile employees is fraught with manual, offline processes. Basic tasks like adding features, suspending subscriptions, swapping SIMs, and upgrading devices either are labor-intensive or cannot be performed for more than one employee at a time. With Control Center for Mobile Enterprise, enterprises can self-manage their entire mobile workforce with a few simple clicks.

Cisco Jasper is initially introducing Control Center for Mobile Enterprise in Canada, in partnership with TELUS, one of Canada’s fastest-growing national telecommunications companies. TELUS is offering the platform to its business customers as part of its new business mobility solution, TELUS IQ Smart Mobility Management.

“We have always been committed to creating an exceptional experience for our customers,” said Craig Thornton, Vice President, Business Mobility Solutions, at TELUS. “The Control Center for Mobile Enterprise platform, as an integral part of TELUS IQ, has enabled us to truly transform our corporate client experience, delivering instant visibility and controls to our customers. We are already seeing excellent market traction and great customer feedback on the platform. Our Cisco Jasper engagement is exemplary of what great partnerships look like.”

“TELUS IQ has improved our operational efficiency,” said Carole St. Arnaud, Procurement Administrator, QuadReal Property Group. “With the capabilities enabled by Cisco Jasper Control Center for Mobile Enterprise, we can self-activate or suspend lines online and instantly detect heavy data users during the billing cycle. TELUS IQ provides the management control we need in a concise viewing platform and we expect it to become our one stop shop for mobility management.”

Control Center for Mobile Enterprise is available today through TELUS as part of their new business mobility solution – TELUS IQ Smart Mobility Management.

Cisco Jasper will make Control Center for Mobile Enterprise available in additional markets in the future through global service provider partners, just as it does today for Control Center for IoT. Cisco Jasper currently partners with 50 service providers who are managing IoT devices across 550 mobile networks worldwide.