100% Chance of Clouds

Cloud Computing is very compelling and definitely here to stay.  It eliminates costly, upfront capital investments in hardware, expensive maintenance contracts, and in some cases (like Amazon’s elastic cloud EC2) the upfront costs of operating systems and applications.  As a company’s needs expand, virtual servers can be added and storage increased with a few keystrokes.  And you only pay for what you use, when you use it.

Cloud computing is not completely silver-lined.  The very nature of being in the cloud means these compute resources are outside trying to look in.  Without setting up elaborate VPN capabilities with its subsequent complexities, it is difficult to impossible for a cloud resource to reach in behind a firewall to get to a device and it’s goldmine of information.

Lantronix’ AccessMyDevice.com with its underlying VIP access technology brings this powerful capability to Cloud computing.  Hitherto (always wanted to use that word in a blog), most SaaS or Cloud applications are relegated to “don’t call me, I’ll call you” status.  Traditionally, a user behind a firewall has to bring up a remote desktop client or a browser and go to the cloud, login and proceed to work.  With AccessMyDevice, cloud applications, including SaaS apps can not only reach out and mine remote devices for information, this data can then be stored in Cloud-based databases where it can be further processed or kept for later retrieval.  The cloud computer can also control these ‘edge’ devices as if it were a server right on the premises.  All of our new products include VIP access technology and therefore can easily be part of this scenario.  As we continue to work with microprocessor and other device vendors to add this capability natively, it becomes very clear that Lantronix is extending the power of Cloud Computing to devices.

Saturday Night WiFi Fever

LTRX and iPhone Disco Suit2 Saturday Night WiFi Fever

Having trouble getting attention at the local disco?  Want to make sure the cameraman pans to you at the next ballgame?  Well then, you really want to check out the iPhone-Lantronix suit:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZSldyNCI10

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luOeJdosct4&feature=related

You may have noticed that the clever inventor used the Lantronix MatchPort WiFi solution to quickly add 802.11 connectivity between his suit and iPhone.  We see a lot of very unique applications of our products and this is certainly at the top of the list.  When you have a great idea for a product, the last thing you want to do is spend a lot of time trying to figure out network connectivity.  There is much to learn and implement if you try and do it from scratch.  This is where Lantronix saves the day no matter what kind of product you are creating.  Many have been able to integrate Lantronix network connectivity in less than 30 minutes.  More time on the dance floor!  Is that cool or what?

An Idea Whose Time Has Come: Go-to-My-Device

If you’ve spent any time in corporate America, especially in the technology industry, you’ve most likely heard of, if not used Citrix’ Go-to-My-PC or LogMeIn’s similar service.  Neither are the only game in town, but when a consumer needs to remotely access their PC or Mac, Go-to-My-PC is a proven solution.  But  what about the underserved and yet untapped market of business users looking to greatly reduce costs and streamline operations by network-enabling and accessing enterprise systems and devices?  To address these M2M needs, we’ve launched AccessMyDevice.com.

What is it?  AcessMyDevice.com is an Internet-based service that enables secure remote access behind firewalls to virtually any device from a web-browser or mobile device.  Very similar to the software models of Go-to-My-PC and LogMeIn, but with very important differences.

Unlike these software-based solutions, AccessMyDevice provides secure 24/7 browser-based access to virtually any machine, device, server, PC, laptop, and more – even devices and old servers not designed with networking capability.  This even includes devices located behind firewalls, regardless of operating system (Linux, Windows, Mac, or any device with KVM support). 

AccessMyDevice: BIOS-level (Boot screen, installer, and main BIOS screen) and Windows-based Screen Shots

 

Two of the most important differentiators are access to all systems at the BIOS-level (see screen shot images), and the ability to conduct a full system restore remotely.   Thanks to our patented technology and use of the SpiderDuo with VIP Access, users aren’t limited by a software-based solution residing at the operating system layer.  This is especially critical if your system crashes – with our solution, it doesn’t matter, you can still access it and resolve issues quickly and easily.

If it’s so easy, why isn’t everyone using it?   Our hope is, they soon will be!  Several of our existing customers are already reaping the benefits of the AccessMyDevice.com service, and with our upcoming nationwide launch in late September, we anticipate adoption to grow every day.   Device connectivity and true M2M communications are an idea whose time has come.

Our Brand Promise: Device Connectivity Made EASY

No, we aren’t just taking a page from Staples.  But their “easy button” was pretty cool.

Why are we talking about Staples, and what is a brand promise?  As the device connectivity market continues to explode, it’s more important than ever for us here at Lantronix to clearly define our brand promise.  And a brand promise is just that – what you promise you’ll deliver to your customers (and partners, and employees, and investors…) – what they’ll get, see, hear and feel – every time they interact with you and your products.  Not only must you deliver on the promise you’re making, but it has to be important to the customer and differentiate you from the competition at the same time.

An easier way to think about brand promise is to simply look at some of the best brands out there – When you buy anything from Apple, what do you expect? (Outstanding user experience right out of the box, with slick technology).  When you walk into Nordstrom, what do you expect? (Customer intimacy and personal attention).  How about DellWalmart? Nike? Google?  Well, you get the idea.  But before any of these brands defined their promise and positioning, they asked themselves:  Is this realistic?  Is this position ownable?  Defendable?  Believable?  Can we deliver on this strategy, and the brand promise that comes with it?

The answer for our own promise is a resounding YES.  For starters, we asked our customers!  Over the past few months, we’ve researched why customers choose Lantronix (and even more importantly, whey they don’t) and how our products perform once deployed across businesses, geographies, and industries.  We also took a look at our competition and their value proposition and positioning.  The analysis was clear – across the board, Lantronix wins because we make everything about device networking easy:

  1. Easy to Choose – It’s easy to choose Lantronix as the best solution for device connectivity.  We offer a full suite of cost-effective products and solutions to fit any need, and have more than 20 years experience in device connectivity across dozens of verticals.
  2.  Easy to Buy – Our global network of strategic partners, VARs, distributors and direct sales makes it quick and easy to buy our products.
  3.  Easy to Implement – We’ve designed our products to be ready-to-use right out of the box, designed for rapid implementation.
  4.  Easy to Secure – Customer-tested, leading edge secure encryption technology ensures your data will remain confidential.
  5.  Easy to Use and Support – If our customer-driven design and usability testing haven’t addressed all of our customers’ concerns, they can email or call for 24×7 support.

Ambitious?  Yes.  But we’ve been building toward this brand promise – from new internal systems and processes, to our culture and mind-set, to our new “30 Minute Challenge” campaign – where we walk into a potential customer site and in 30 minutes network enable any device.  Bottom line is, we’re continually fine tuning our business to make everything about your experience with Lantronix EASY.  The next part is easier (pun intended) – leveraging marketing and sales to get the word out and scale the business.   All we ask of our customers, partners, investors, and employees is to let us know how we’re doing.  We’re listening.

Related blogs and links:

  • Forbes – “CMOs: Make A Connection Between Brand Promise And Purpose”

http://www.forbes.com/2010/04/30/iceland-cisco-aflac-basf-branding-ellen-page-cmo-network-allen-adamson.html

The Enterprise App Store: A Megaphone for Voice-of-Customer

Given the success of the App Store model (thanks of course to Apple); it’s only a matter of time before the “Enterprise App Store” becomes almost as common place as the consumer version.   And at Lantronix, we believe this will be an incredible vehicle for communicating the voice of OUR customers to the market.

Over the past few months we’ve been working with customers and our internal developers to build out a customer-driven enterprise app store.  What better way to highlight the unique applications for Lantronix’ technology than to develop and promote a community of enthusiasts who are leveraging our products to build secure, easy-to-use, business-critical applications for their specific vertical markets?   Through conversations and research with our customers, we’ve learned a key differentiator for why they choose Lantronix is the fact that we make everything about device networking EASY – including ease of development, ease of reaching remote equipment using ManageLinx VIP Access and fast time to market with turnkey solutions.  While often our products are used right out of the box, some want a special feature added or want to completely modify the functionality; the App store is a fantastic way to address this important need.  The sharing of customers’ creativity and successes will reduce our customers’ development time and costs, and further accelerate their time-to-market.

Think you’ve got an app, or even just an idea for one?  Shoot us an email today at appstore@lantronix.com, and who knows, maybe you’ll be featured in our upcoming launch.