Cisco Acquires ThinkSmart Technologies For Wi-Fi Location Analytics


Cisco on Wednesday said it has acquired ThinkSmart Technologies, a small developer of software that delivers Wi-Fi location data analysis, in a move that will help Cisco sharpen its mobility focus.

Hilton Romanski, vice president and head of corporate business development at Cisco, unveiled the acquisition in a blog post in which he wrote that Cisco is looking at ThinkSmart as a way to better manage wireless customers' experience in public venues.

"Together, Cisco and ThinkSmart will enhance the wireless network by providing location intelligence and analytics to service provider and enterprise customers to know what is happening in their environments and to better engage end users," Romanski wrote.

[Related: Cisco's Chambers Plans Retirement, Names Potential Successors]

Cork, Ireland-based ThinkSmart's location analytics technology uses Wi-Fi networks to collect information such as the time of day, traffic patterns and dwell times from mobile users within a venue, Romanski wrote.

"This information helps enterprises and venue operators improve the customer experience by identifying appropriate staffing levels, reducing wait times, optimizing business processes, and improving customer flows," he wrote.

Cisco provided little specific information on ThinkSmart's technology, and any attempt to access the ThinkSmart website was automatically routed to Cisco's announcement of the acquisition.

However, Internet Web caches identify ThinkSmart's primary technology as Intellify, which combines such technologies as data mining, clustering, pattern recognition, optimization, planning, scheduling and event processing into a single unified platform.

Cisco did include ThinkSmart Intellify locational intelligence technology in its Developer Network Marketplace Solutions Catalog. In its description, Cisco wrote that the detection of Wi-Fi signals is important to understanding customer or passenger behavior within a building for retail, operations and security purposes.

"There are many ways of analysing this data and extracting different behavioural parameters. Intellify Locational Intelligence provides the toolkit of techniques to extract this knowledge easily and to provide the report necessary for it to be acted upon," Cisco wrote.

ThinkSmart is now a part of Cisco's Wireless Networking Group.

Romanski did not discuss the value of the acquisition.

Cisco did not respond to requests for further information.

PUBLISHED SEPT. 26, 2012