Arista Brings New Switches, Cloud Approach to Campus Networks

Today’s topics include Arista introducing new switches to support campus network initiatives, and Microsoft announcing the sleeker Surface Hub 2 digital whiteboard.

As Arista Networks focuses on expanding its network portfolio from the data center out to the campus, officials unveiled at their analyst meeting this month their first products aimed at campus networks.

These include two new switches that are designed to reduce network complexity by collapsing what typically have been multiple networking tiers—including the leaf and spine—into a single layer that they refer to as the “spline.”

At the same time, the plan is for Arista to use its EOS network operating system and CloudVision management platform to drive the company’s Cognitive Cloud Networking approach, extending the principles of cloud computing to the campus.

Arista officials also pointed to partnerships with Aruba Networks and VMware to help drive their vision of the “cognitive campus.”

On May 15, Microsoft Chief Product Officer Panos Panay offered the public its first peek at the Surface Hub 2, the next version of the company’s touch- and stylus-enabled digital whiteboard for enterprise group collaboration and video conferencing.

Sporting a sleeker look, the device offers users new placement options, including a four-screen video wall configuration that creates an expansive canvas for Power BI dashboards, PowerPoint presentations and virtual meetings. "The new Surface Hub 2 is sleeker, more agile and more affordable to fit any workspace or work style," stated Panay.

In a single-device configuration, users can physically rotate the Surface Hub 2 from landscape to portrait mode and back again. Measuring 50 inches, the Surface Hub 2's screen has a resolution exceeding 4K. In terms of software, the device runs Windows 10, Office 365, Microsoft Whiteboard and Microsoft Teams.