The new RUCKUS Analytics service, which supports on-prem as well as public and private clouds, adds new capabilities around prioritizing incidents, troubleshooting and health monitoring, compared to what was offered before.
Today, CommScope is formally announcing the availability of their RUCKUS Analytics network intelligence cloud service. It supplements – and for many customers will replace – the RUCKUS Smart Cell Insight [SCI] offering. While it upgrades the old product in several respects, the key one is the ability to identify and classify incidents by their importance for prioritization, which is not rare in the security industry, but it is in core networking.
“The key element of the product is identifying incidents – both service affecting and pre-service affecting,” said Mark Davis, VP, Product & Vertical Solutions Marketing – RUCKUS, at CommScope. “It identifies the root causes and recommends a course of action. The unique element is that we are classifying them by severity level to address head on that question of what to address first. That is novel within our networking peer group today.”
RUCKUS has bounced around between multiple corporate organizations since they were originally acquired by Brocade four years ago. They are no longer an independent entity, and their name has acquired CAPITAL LETTERS, but they still do pretty much what they have always done.
Brocade acquired RUCKUS in early 2016. Broadcom bought Brocade, but the RUCKUS operation was peripheral to their interest, so they were spun out into Arris in December 2017. Under Arris, RUCKUS was the same independent entity it had been at its earlier stops, serving essentially as the enterprise arm of Arris. In April 2019, CommScope acquired Arris, and RUCKUS with it. Now, within CommScope, RUCKUS is a business unit that is part of the Venture and Campus Networks segment. That’s one of the four segments in the CommScope business, with the MSL/cable market, home networks, and mobile network operator focused outdoor wireless being the others.
“RUCKUS still has focused on its traditional business, although the product line has expanded dramatically,” Davis said. “While we were at Brocade, we pulled the Brocade campus switching business into RUCKUS, so we went to Arris as both Wi-Fi and switching.”
RUCKUS had AI and machine learning capabilities before, but RUCKUS Analytics is very much a next-generation approach. The technology is all organic, reflecting two years plus worth of internal development. It supersedes SCI, a reporting and analytics product with some machine learning, which will continue to be sold because it was designed as an on-product, and some customers want that rather than a cloud offering.
“RUCKUS Analytics is different because it is a cloud service,” Davis said. “In addition, everything that existed in SCI is pulled into RUCKUS Analytics, and we have also added new functionality. SCI will continue because it’s an on premises-based approach. That’s preferred by communications service providers, while the enterprise is moving towards cloud services, in this area, and in many others.” In contrast, the architecture of RUCKUS Analytics is specifically designed for on-prem as well as private and public clouds.
Davis identified three fundamental upgrades in RUCKUS Analytics over SCI. The first is that Incident Analytics module which proactively identifies root causes.
“SCI has a machine learning-driven anomaly detection capability, but this module goes much further,” he stated. “It also provides a complete view of the state of the network with a drill-down list.”
In addition to the Incident Analytics module, two other new modules represent new capabilities. The Client Troubleshooting module provides analysts with a view of the life of a client connection down to the specific point of failure, using correlations across multiple realms and ideas. The Network Health Monitoring module lets IT teams establish SLA thresholds and monitor adherence to them.
“The health monitoring wasn’t in SCI because it was designed with larger service providers in mind, and they had their own tools for this,” Davis indicated.
RUCKUS Analytics subscriptions for Access Points and switches managed by SmartZone network controllers or RUCKUS Cloud are available now.
“For channel partners, it will increase the percentage of their business with recurring revenue,” Davis said. “End users will like the simplicity that RUCKUS has long provided itself on. It’s a single cloud service with a single UI. Some competitors have two or three product subscriptions to buy. We have no gratuitous licensing. That’s definitely not our game.”