Cisco launches Internet of Things innovation centre in Sydney


news Cisco has launched a new innovation centre in Sydney that will focus on open Internet of Things (IoT) developments.

Innovation Central Sydney will include dedicated space to demonstrate IoT in action and open areas where customers, startups, researchers, entrepreneurs and technology enthusiasts can work to develop new ideas and technologies.

Further, Cisco experts, together with industry partners and ecosystem startups, will develop proof-of-concepts, features and functionalities, and carry out rapid prototyping.

The Sydney centre – which will be located at technology incubator ATP Innovations – will operate in conjunction with Cisco’s other Australian centre in Perth, in addition to eight others worldwide.

“The NSW Government is determined to increase the value of primary industries and drive economic growth right across the state,” said Niall Blair MLC, Minister for Primary Industries, Lands and Water. “In order to do this we know we need to work closely with industry and to focus on digital transformation taking place in all sectors not only in Australia but globally. Innovation Central is an ideal mechanism to drive the transformation of our Primary Industries in NSW.”

While Cisco led the development of Innovation Central Sydney, initial partners include: CSIRO’s Data61, University of New South Wales (UNSW), National Farmers’ Federation (NFF), NSW Farmers, ATP Innovations and the NSW Department of Primary Industries.

The centre will also link into a Cisco Innovation Hub on the campus at UNSW.

Cisco said it is investing US$15 million over five years to its Australian innovation centres, as part of its “ongoing commitment” to generating new economic growth through technology innovation in the areas of digital transformation, IoT and cyber security.

The projects partners are also making investments, which are expected to exceed this figure, the firm added.

“Australia is a sophisticated market with a high level of innovation and is an early adopter of new technology,” said Ken Boal, Vice President, Cisco Australia and New Zealand. “… The aim of Innovation Central Sydney is to turn innovation into real commercial solutions based on IoT in agriculture, smart cities and transportation in Australia.”

Digitisation, data and the IoT offer “unprecedented economic opportunities” for the private and public sectors, Cisco said. It backed up the claim with estimates from management consulting firm McKinsey that digitisation could add up to $2.2 trillion to annual GDP by 2025.

According to a recent study, Cisco added, Australia is one of few countries with the greatest potential to benefit from IoT, due to its “proximity to Asia, well-trained engineers and innovation power”.

Cisco estimated the potential Value at Stake for the Australian economy to be more than US$74 billion over the next 10 years.

As the leading ICT research organisation in Australia, we see our foundational partnership in Innovation Central as an opportunity to build and extend relationships in the local and global IoT ecosystem,” said Adrian Turner, CEO, Data61. “It will also facilitate deeper collaboration and high impact outcomes with Cisco and other partners around our cyber security and data analytics research.”

Image credit: Cisco Systems