AI-Driven Virtual Assistant for Next-Generation Wireless Networks

By Max Maxfield |

Mist's AI-driven virtual network assistant makes IT smarter and faster, thereby ensuring the best experience for wireless users.

Although the company was only founded in 2014, the folks at Mist are making a big splash, most recently by introducing the wireless network industry's first artificial intelligence (AI)-driven virtual network assistant (VNA). 

Let's start with the fact that they have major wireless domain expertise; they hold more than 100 patents; they've made major contributions to 802.11, e, I, k, r, u, v, w, a...; and they've "touched" more than 70% of the world's WANs. They also have domain expertise with regard to monitoring and collecting global data, measuring all aspects of network usage and performance in real-time, data science, and both supervised and unsupervised machine learning (ML).  More recently, they developed a purpose-built Mist Cloud using the latest cloud technologies, like Storm, Spark, Mesos, and containers.

All of this underlying technology supports Mist's latest breakthrough -- the world’s first AI-driven VNA for wireless operations and integrated helpdesk. Powered by Mist’s AI engine, Marvis, Mist's virtual network assistant is a new cloud-based micro-service that uses natural language processing (NLP) to make it easy to query the Mist global cloud for real-time monitoring of mobile client activity.

The simplest way to wrap your brain around what all this means is to imagine you are a guy called Randy and you put a call into your help center and tell the person on the end of the line that you are having problems. I know that when I call my cable company, I can typically settle down for a lengthy period of Q&A before they even have a clue what I'm talking about. By comparison, when the person at the helpdesk is using Mist's virtual network assistant, they can employ natural language to pose queries like: "How was wireless client Randy's iPhone doing last week? 

(Source: Mist)

The virtual network assistant can examine all of the data associated with this user and immediately focus on any unusual areas. Furthermore, the assistant can compare this user against other iPhone users and users of other types of smartphones to see if there are any non-obvious system-level implications. 

In the same way that help desk personnel can use the virtual network assistant to query the status of individual users, network administrators can use it to monitor the health of an entire campus or of multiple facilities at disparate locations.

(Source: Mist)

In a nutshell, Mist's AI-driven virtual network assistant uses data science to easily identify Wi-Fi issues, to understand the impact of wireless problems, to correlate events across the wireless/wired/mobile device/IoT domains, and to automatically generate alerts when it detects any anomalies.

To put this another way, Mist's AI-driven virtual network assistant makes IT smarter and faster, thereby ensuring the best experience for wireless users. I only wish that whoever is maintaining the wireless networks I use were equipped with Mist's technology.

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