Inside Advanced Scale Challenges|Friday, May 26, 2017
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Unified IoT Management Is Aim of VMware Offering 

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At Dell EMC World in Las Vegas today, VMware announced an ambitious IoT infrastructure management and monitoring technology strategy that the company said will provide a unified means to manage, operate, scale and secure IoT projects from the edge to the cloud.

The first in a family of IoT offerings, VMware Pulse IoT Center is an enterprise-grade IoT implementation and oversight solution designed to enable IT and operational technology teams to control IoT infrastructure and edge “things” – devices and sensors. According to the company, it enables interoperability between heterogeneous edge systems and connected devices with different hardware, operating systems and communication protocols.

“It’s that infrastructure layer,” said VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger during a conference keynote. “This is critically important to build these IoT networks and solutions of the future – they have to be secure, managed and connected.”

VMware Pulse IoT Center is intended to be a point of coherence as companies implement IoT projects involving hundreds or thousands of different types of edge systems and connected devices across their IoT use cases. Gelsinger said it “helps improve reliability of infrastructure by providing accurate and real-time visibility of ‘thing’ health to enable customers to proactively address anomalies before they arise.”

Pulse IoT Center utilizes existing VMware technologies, including VMware AirWatch for device management and VMware vRealize Operations for infrastructure monitoring and troubleshooting. Available as both an on-prem or a service offering, it is currently in beta with customers in the automotive, entertainment, retail banking, health care and manufacturing industries, according to VMware.

VMware Pulse IoT Center

VMware Pulse IoT Center provides a single console to on-board, manage, monitor and secure diverse IoT edge systems, connected devices and applications, with the ability to visualize edge systems, connected devices and their relationships and dependencies. Users can establish parameters and alerts related to edge device functionality, performance and KPIs.

For IoT security, VMware said Pulse IoT Center minimizes data exposed by creating a “tunnel” from data point to application by using VMware NSX network virtualization technology as an add-on. In addition, it offers an “enterprise wipe” of data from devices at any time if they are exposed to security threats and maintains up-to-date firmware and security patches and upgrade software over-the-air via an integrated policy engine.

“We at Fujitsu welcome the launch of VMware Pulse IoT Center, which we will integrate into our OTA Reprogramming Solution for connected cars,” said Shikou Kikuta, SVP and head of the Mobility IoT Business Unit, Fujitsu Limited. “Fujitsu and VMware will also expand collaboration to provide more secure and efficient IoT solutions, primarily on mobility.”

This announcement follows other recent IoT news from VMware, including relationships with Deloitte, EuroTech, Fujitsu, HARMAN, ThingWorx and Viz Explorer. Last year, it launched Liota (Little IoT Agent), a vendor-neutral open source software development kit for building secure IoT data and control orchestration applications.

The company said VMware Pulse IoT Center will be available in calendar 2017 with pricing announced upon general availability.

“Our customers are looking for faster, real-time analysis of the massive amount of data produced by devices on their networks, to perform immediate, smart decision-making," said Andy Rhodes, vice president and GM, Internet of Things, Dell. "We know that intelligent computing at the edge of the network is critical to enhancing customer experience and accelerating business growth. VMware Pulse IoT Center will help our customers make managing all their data and devices simpler and their journey to digital transformation a reality.”

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