In 2014, I sat at my kitchen table with Sujai Hajela to discuss our vision for a product that would change the way that customers manage networks. Who knew that just seven years later, that product would be evaluated in a Gartner® Magic Quadrant™, and that we’d be named a Leader with the furthest position in both Ability to Execute and Completeness of Vision? Flash forward to today, and that’s exactly what has happened with Juniper Mist.
This week, Gartner released the 2021 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Wired and Wireless LAN Infrastructure and Juniper Networks was recognized as a Leader for the second year in a row, positioned furthest in both Ability to Execute and Completeness of Vision. This is, without a doubt, one of the most special career moments for Mist and a great example of what startups can achieve with an amazing team.
Where It All Began
This journey started with a simple vision – that cloud and AI are fundamental architectural changes required to carry networking into the next generation. Our true north has always been to create a solution that can troubleshoot and manage networks on par with human domain experts. We founded Mist Systems because we knew that the only way to achieve this was via a blank sheet of “startup” paper – i.e., the old controller-based wireless architectures could not fundamentally make the technology leap and early-stage cloud solutions lacked enterprise scale and resiliency. So, we built a cloud that delivered a fundamentally more reliable way to develop and manage software, thus increasing the velocity of innovation. And we embedded an AI engine (Marvis) into our solution to move the industry from a paradigm of managing network elements to one of managing user experiences. Juniper’s acquisition of Mist enabled us to deliver these concepts at mass scale – and across more mediums. Now, wireless, wired and SD-WAN share a common cloud and AI schema, enabling the best user and operator experiences from client-to-cloud. In the process, we’ve seen amazing traction, with four of the top Fortune 10 companies now using and learning the value of AIOps and separating AI/ML marketing hype from reality.
The first step in the Mist journey, which started in 2014, was to collect the right data needed to optimize user experiences in real time. So, we designed a new Access Point with experience-based telemetry, built the first microservices cloud for wireless networking and invented Marvis – the industry’s first AI-driven virtual network assistant. Marvis merges data science and domain expertise with the ability to answer questions like “What was wrong with Sujai’s wireless connectivity yesterday?”
Marvis Provides Unsurpassed Insight and Automation
Today, nearly three years post acquisition, Marvis is also answering similar questions for wired and SD-WAN networks thanks to its ability to ingest data from switches and routers running Junos, session-aware 128 Technology SD-WAN routers and Marvis client SDKs. All of this rich data enables Marvis to answer a wide array of networking questions with extreme granularity, delivering benefits to both small and large customers around the world.
Over the past six years, Marvis has continually learned and delivered even more insight to IT customers. In fact, Juniper made it a goal to achieve 80% efficacy with Marvis, and are very near to reaching – i.e., our AI-driven assistant can answer the vast majority of questions that arise within a network. By providing customers such great insight with almost no false positives, Marvis really highlights how deep learning can make a real difference in the networking industry. Juniper Mist is proud that to be one of the few companies where the data science team is tied to the hip of the customer success team organizationally, ensuring the two feed off of each other and constantly learn from what customers are experiencing.
Marvis is the only solution in the industry that leverages both natural language processing (NLP) and natural language understanding (NLU) to answer complex questions using simple language queries. In doing so, Juniper has transitioned the world from CLIs and dashboards to a conversational interface, which helps users manage and troubleshoot complex networks with relative ease. This has allowed Marvis to become a trusted member of customers’ IT teams.
It Takes a Team
We’re incredibly proud of the product we built at Mist and Juniper. We’re even more proud to be working with the best engineering and product management teams – but we also know that even the best product does not sell itself. It also takes execution in both sales and marketing, which enabled Juniper Mist to cut through the noise and land some of the best customers and partners in the world. Juniper is thankful to the individuals who put their trust in Mist, especially the customers and partners who believed in Mist’s vision early on and gave Mist the opportunity to earn their business. We know we’ve created something special when our best salespeople are our very own customers.
Last, but certainly not least, thank you to the industry analysts who have guided Juniper and Mist along the way. The insight is invaluable and reports like the Gartner Magic Quadrant have recognized us in what is a very crowded field.
This is just the beginning. As Marvis continues to grow and ingest data from more sources in the network, the Juniper Mist solution will continue to learn and provide more value. We have made enormous progress toward our initial goal of answering IT questions on par with a human domain expert, but we won’t rest until we are a true networking Jeopardy champion.
To learn more about Juniper Mist AI and how companies are using Marvis to reduce their operational costs and improve customer and employee experiences, view the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Wired and Wireless LAN Infrastructure report here or tune into our next live Wireless & Wired Wednesday demo here.
Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Wired and Wireless LAN Infrastructure, Mike Toussaint, Christian Canales, Tim Zimmerman, 15 November 2021.
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