This article originally appeared on IT in Canada and is republished with their permission.
Cisco is investing big in Toronto’s technology sector. The company announced yesterday that Toronto has been selected as a site for one of its global Internet of Everything (IoE) innovation centres. The new centre represents a planned investment of up to $100 million in Toronto over the next decade.
Toronto is the only North American site to be chosen. The other locations are in South Korea, Brazil, and Germany. As such, the Toronto innovation centre will be the North American hub for advancing the Internet of Everything.
“The Internet of Everything is not only changing the world, but creating new opportunities,” said Nitin Kawale, president, Cisco Canada. “Connecting the unconnected has the potential to bring revolutionary change to industries, including: healthcare, education, municipalities, transportation and construction. With this IoE Innovation Centre, Cisco aims to help create new markets and solutions and establish a hotbed for experimentation.”
Set to house Cisco Canada’s new headquarters, the IoE centre will occupy 15,000 square feet of Oxford Properties’ new RBC WaterPark Place. The building is scheduled for completion in April 2015. It’ll be the first commercial office tower in North America to take advantage of a fully integrated IP-based building and energy network.
“The new Cisco Innovation Centre at RBC WaterPark Place will reaffirm Toronto as an information and technology leader,” said Norm Kelly, Deputy Mayor, City of Toronto. Kelly spoke at the announcement, along with other Cisco and government officials.
“This new facility will make Toronto an even better place for entrepreneurs and innovators to do business,” said Kelly. “It will also position Toronto as a unique tech hub that will allow companies to harness Cisco’s expertise and leverage their IoE market opportunity.”
The Toronto site will create, test and certify industry solutions for the new world of things to be shaped by the Internet of Everything.
“Today, less than one per cent of things that could be connected are connected,” said Kawale at the event. “Imagine what’s possible with the remaining 99 per cent of things. That’s the Internet of Everything, a vision of the future that’s emerging today.”
Smartphones, PCs, and TVs were just the beginning of the IoE. These devices represent only one per cent of things connected to the Internet today. There remain billions that are not yet connected. And according to Cisco, connecting that other 99 per cent represents a $19 trillion market opportunity.
“The Internet of Everything is a $19 trillion global opportunity over the next decade – including almost $500 billion available to Canadian private and public-sector organizations. Today, much of that opportunity is left on the table. Cisco Innovation Centres help to accelerate and catalyze IoE opportunities for our customers by developing expertise and partnerships in key verticals,” said Rob Lloyd, president, Development and Sales, Cisco.
The IoE facility will focus on co-creating and demonstrating solutions, initially in the areas of healthcare, energy, infrastructure, real estate, and smart communities. It will bring together a wide range of organizations, including: resellers, partners, academic collaborators, customers, startups, governments, and municipalities.
Some of the initiatives the new centre will be taking on include improved delivery of government services to citizens, urban mobility and transit, and solutions to address healthcare challenges. Cisco is hoping to drive innovation in these areas through investing in Toronto’s technology infrastructure.
“Toronto is a world-class community of creativity and talent. This facility will be a global hub of innovation for the Internet of Everything technologies. It puts Toronto and Cisco on the world stage,” said Kawale.
The new global innovation centre comes as part of Cisco’s commitment last December of up to $4 billion over the next 10 years, to expand the company’s footprint in Ontario and create up to 1,700 new jobs.