Smart Infrastructure 2017: A Sneak Peek from our Head Engineer

We spoke to Crispin Dent-Young last week about the application of NetOS® at Ashton Gate Stadium – and now he’s given us a sneak peek into not only what attendees of Smart Infrastructure 2017 will experience, but his expert industry insight into a future that may be going in a direction many haven’t yet noticed…


Crispin, there’ll be plenty of people who would love to attend Smart Infrastructure 2017 this year, but won’t be in the country then. What will they be missing out on?

Apart from an excellent lunch, they’ll be missing out on seeing just how our NetOS® platform can take a stadium and all its component parts, and bring them together in a data driven, and user focused way. We’ll be automatically configuring every single part of the event, demonstrating that NetOS® is so much more than just a network: it’s a turnkey solution for hosting an event in a larger venue.

And aside from the impressive guest speakers, Ruckus’ Thierry Chau and West Ham’s Mike Bohndiek, what will attendees be experiencing?

We can remotely take over any of the facilities at the stadium, with a flexible network platform that can identify and adapt every piece of infrastructure that moves around the venue. For example, you can plug in a till anywhere in the stadium, and the network will not only immediately recognise what it is and where, but also supply what provisions it needs within the network.

It’s clear to see how stadium management will benefit from this, but what about the other suppliers at a venue: the food, hospitality, security, media content providers?

Each one of these will have their own isolated network slice, and NetOS® will give them the visibility of their entire network – making monitoring simpler, giving a clearer base for troubleshooting, and enabling wiser data-driven decision making. Absolutely everyone will benefit from this improved visibility.

Is this the direction you see networks going, then: slicing?

Honestly? I think that we’ll be taking virtualization and expand on it in a big way – a national and international infrastructure and networking, way. I see this as being the next step for networking. We have demonstrated that it makes sense in the stadium and large venue environment, and our work for Bristol is Open is proving that city communities can benefit from it. Virtualization will make even more sense for larger scale networks: countries, national service providers, and everything in between. It is just possible that this is the way that everyone will consume networks in the future. In the same way that cloud has taken over, I think that networks will do the same – as a virtual entity.

Want to discover more about what virtualization could offer you? Get in touch with us now.