Before Google Released Cloud IoT Core, Its Customers Relied On A Channel Partner Product To Communicate With Devices In The Field

This article was published on CRN. Read the full article here.

The Internet of Things service Google introduced this week will make it easier to securely connect devices and sensors deployed in the field to Google’s cloud infrastructure. But before that product came to fruition, many Google IoT customers relied on a predecessor built by one of Google’s channel partners.

Agosto, an IoT specialist based in Minneapolis, developed the MQTT broker that powered Google Cloud’s IoT services since last year. Google introduced similar technology Tuesday as a component of Cloud IoT Core, a fully managed service that evens the playing field with competitors Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services.

Aric Bandy, president of Agosto, said his company initially developed its own messaging software to meet customer demand because Google didn’t yet offer that service natively. MQTT is an industry standard messaging protocol for sensors and mobile devices.

When Google realized it needed to facilitate connections to field devices to be competitive in the IoT market, the Mountain View, Calif.-based Internet giant turned to its partner, demonstrating the evolving relationship between cloud providers and their channel.

Google insisted the messaging broker it hired Agosto to build last year be open source so the entire community could benefit from it, Bandy said. Agosto released the service on GitHub and later Google Cloud Launcher.

Cloud IoT Core, launched in private beta, in addition to the new MQTT broker enables managing edge devices in the wild – be they installed in oil fields, farms, manufacturing facilities or hospitals – once they’re connected and data is ingested.

Click here to read the full article on CRN.

Partners Cheer Google’s New Solutions-Oriented Channel Approach

This article appeared on CRN. Click to read the full article. 

The day before Google’s Cloud Next 2017 Conference, new channel chief Bertrand Yansouni and other Google execs hosted partners at an off-site summit in San Francisco. During those sessions earlier this week, they outlined a new approach to how Google will work with its channel, one encompassing investments in product, sales and enablement programs and encouraging a mindset geared to comprehensive solutions, not individual products.

The new “unified approach” breaks down channel silos by rewarding partners for selling the whole Google Cloud stack, a change that was overdue, Yansouni told CRN. Previously “partners and sales agents were aligned by products, not accounts and solutions,” he said.

Partners are elated with the new philosophy, telling CRN it aligns with how enterprise customers actually look to purchase technology. Google’s program changes illustrate that, after some stumbles, the consumer-tech powerhouse is starting to understand the critical enterprise market.

“There’s a really positive change that’s afoot,” Aric Bandy, president of Agosto, a Minneapolis, Minn.-based Premier partner, told CRN.

Google has tweaked a compensation model that could, in some scenarios, fail to provide financial parity to sales reps when delivering deals to the channel. Field agents no longer can be better compensated for taking customers direct, Yansouni told CRN, which eliminates any potential for channel conflict.

To further encourage the solutions-focused approach, Google introduced four new specialization credentials that partners can earn to validate specific skills. It also launched a revamped partner directory that makes it easier for partners to promote their expertise, as well as a new engineering team that advises partners on large engagements.

The “unified approach” assigns Google’s sales reps to accounts instead of products. And the cloud operator will tabulate all revenue across the portfolio when assessing whether a partner rises to Premier status, Yansouni said.

Digital Signage Today Covers Skykit’s Digital Signage Guide

Agosto Inc., a digital signage content management system developer, has released its digital signage guide as a response to questions from customers. Companies such as NEC, Intel, Best Buy for Business and FASTSIGNS participated in the guide, entitled, “10 Digital Signage Topics You Need to Know Before Buying – The Complete Guide,” according to a press release.

The guide covers the history of the industry, such as how the hardware and software have developed. It also gives advice on the key features to look for in digital signage hardware and software. It also covers topics such as content, rollout and how to measure return-on-investment, according to the release.

“There’s a lot to learn about digital signage, and the majority of information available addresses specific needs, rather than the big picture,” said Agosto President Aric Bandy. “Our guide fills that void by providing detailed, platform-agnostic information that will educate and provide context to buyers so they can make the most informed decisions.”

The guide can be read here. Users can choose to download specific chapters rather than the entire guide, according to their preference.

The original article can be found on the Digital Signage Today’s website here.

Nasdaq: Alphabet’s Google for Work Team to Hire Wyoming State CIO

Alphabet Inc.’s (GOOGL – Analyst Report) Google is reportedly appointing Flint Waters, the chief information officer (CIO) of the state of Wyoming.

According to reports, Waters is expected to step down from the state service on Sep 23 and join Google for Work team in early October. He will play an advisory role, helping local and state governments migrate to Google products, especially the cloud.

Water’s Days as Wyoming CIO

Waters has been Wyoming’s CIO for five years and led a number of cloud migration projects. Waters headed Wyoming’s migration from state-owned data centers to Google and Azure-based cloud.

He also led the development of the Wyoming Unified Network, which is a network of fiber lines that connects important cities in the state and provides broadband access of 200 Kbps per student to school districts across the state.

Recently, Wyoming collaborated with Google for Work partner Agosto to upgrade from Google Apps for Government to Google Apps Unlimited. The upgrade will provide the state unlimited drive storage, advanced reporting and auditing capacities and additional administrative features.

Read the full article here.

Agosto’s Irfan Khan Named as One of Minnesota’s Young Millionaires 2015

From weekends in his basement, he built what became one of Google’s 2014 Global Enterprise Partners of the Year.

The allure of early wealth is the American entrepreneurial fantasy. How businesspeople achieve that dreamed-of status by age 40 is not consistent, but rarely does the story involve an MBA followed by two decades working for a Fortune 500 corporation. The paths are eclectic and often idiosyncratic, but the 2015 crop of Twin Cities Business young millionaires do have intriguing characteristics in common. Most are immigrants or first-generation Americans.

Read More

IT Business Edge: Agosto Gateway Turns Google Cloud Storage into a Network Drive

While IT organizations are showing a lot of interest in cloud storage these days, many are not prepared to manage it. Not only is there complexity involved with actually setting it up, most providers of public cloud services are “faceless entities” in that they don’t provide much in the way of customer support.

Looking to fill a gap in the customer experience in the cloud, Agosto has launched the Cloud Storage Gateway, an appliance that makes the Google cloud storage service appear to be just another network drive.

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