Cisco’s differentiator is that the analytics tools won’t just be located in the core or edge of a network. Cisco will be pushing analytics all the way out to the extreme edge of a network by having the tools built into its network devices. If the core can be thought of as the cloud and the edge considered the fog, one could think of the extreme edge as being “mist” computing – a more dispersed version of the fog, which is a dispersed version of the cloud.
Cisco’s thesis, which I believe is correct, is that analytics is best done as close to the data as possible. Take for example a retail environment. If the store collects information on a customer and wants to analyze the data and take action, why should that data be backhauled all the way to a cloud resource thousands of miles away, or a fog resource hundreds of miles away? Even tens of miles is too far. Instead, the analytics should be done in the store. This means decisions can be made in seconds instead of hours or even days.