Cisco unveils edge 5G routers, gateways for industrial IoT

Cisco unveiled three new Catalyst 5G industrial routers and a series of IoT gateways on Tuesday. The company claimed they will bring reliable connectivity to any IoT edge use case.

The gear is suited for campuses, branch offices, substations, fleets and remote locations, said Vikas Butaney, GM of Cisco IoT, in a statement.

Customers need such hardware to be in play for up to 10 years, Butaney said.  The modularity of the Cisco products eliminates the rip and replace cycle to be able to deploy 5G and “whatever comes next,” he added.

The Catalyst portfolio relies on Cisco Cyber Vision for network visibility from the enterprise to the edge. It embeds  sensors within the industrial network so security crews can detect threats to their industrial system within operational context for a coverged IT/operations threat managements strategy without the need for more boxes and other vendors.

The three new routers are available this month and run Cisco IOS XE to extend the enterprise network and SD-WAN to the edge. The IoT Gateway series is packaged with an IoT operations dashboard  and include simple set up to connect to formerly unconnected network assets.

Connectivity includes 5G and LTE modules for public or private cellular and public safety apps such as FirstNet, DSL, Wi-SUN. The CPUs and battery in the routers can be updated in the field.

In a statement, Mike Finley, president of Industrial Networking Solutions said that gateways position Cisco for the most complete IoT solution for industrial markets. INS provides IT services along with products and technical support.

Like many companies, Cisco is positioning itself to serve the IoT market as it grows.  Gartner recently forecast that more than 15 billion IoT devices will connect to the enterprise infrastructure by 2029. About three-fourths of all data will be generated out of the data centers in edge setups.