NetBeez Turns 10
This week we celebrate 10 years of operations of NetBeez. Outside bragging (just a tiny bit) about us, I want to talk about how it got started, what the most significant milestones have been, and what’s in store for NetBeez’ future. Before I continue, it is important to mention that what makes us the most proud is the trust that our customers continue to give us. Not only without customers we would not be here celebrating our 10 years. Most importantly, customers fuel our commitment to our mission: we swell with pride seeing our solution out there in the field, doing the job that it was supposed to. So thanks again to all of you that chose NetBeez.
How it started
Like most companies, it all starts with the vision and the product. The vision was that network troubleshooting should be performed with data, and not with opinions. As a result, the product had to help network engineers like us to find the signal out of the noise generated by network monitoring tools, system logs, and customer complaints. Put simply, it had to capture the true end-user experience by gathering evidence that would ease the network troubleshooting process. With just an idea, we applied to the AlphaLab startup accelerator in Pittsburgh. On the second try, we got accepted into the 15-week program. We were ecstatic: someone was willing to provide the initial funding and resources needed to build a company around our idea. Now that we had a company, we had to build an actual product that would be used by enterprise customers.
When considering the product we had in mind, we realized the need for a way to conduct performance tests from both the user’s perspective and from remote locations where users are situated. The Raspberry Pi platform, just released the year before, provided a cost effective solution. As a result, NetBeez was one of the first truly distributed network monitoring solutions to deploy Raspberry Pi boards to capture the end-user experience at remote office locations. In the following years, we continued building and adding more capabilities to our solution, such as the ability to monitor WiFi networks and hybrid cloud environments. Then, COVID happened.
During the first few months of COVID, we wondered how quickly people would return to the office and how this change would affect us. After all, NetBeez was primarily used to monitor the wired and wireless end-user experience of office users. Then we quickly realized that, with the shift to remote work, our solution was actually well positioned to address the new set of challenges faced by a more distributed workforce. We developed and released in less than six months our remote worker solution, based on Windows and Mac endpoints.
Today, the remote worker network monitoring solution by NetBeez offers an innovative and scalable Digital Experience Monitoring solution to large and distributed enterprise networks (see NetBeez Gartner reviews). Since its launch, many Fortune 500 and Global 2000 companies adopted our solution to address and resolve end-user experience issues.
Where It Is Going
As we enter the second decade of our journey, we are mindful of what pushed us forward as a company and as a team. Firstly, the startup approach of doing something that users want, building and shipping quickly is still ingrained in our DNA. In fact, we keep our release cycle as short as possible to increase the velocity of new feature releases and obtain user feedback sooner. This is not trivial for us to implement since our solution can also be hosted on-premises, unlike a pure SaaS solution. Therefore, each time that we bundle and ship updates to the customers we have some extra work to do outside building new features. However, we found a good balance with quarterly, sometimes even shorter, release cycles. This provides a sound strategy as it delivers better outcomes to our customers.
Secondly, our commitment to assisting IT teams in managing the end-user experience in large, complex, and distributed network environments remains the same, perhaps even stronger than when we started. We are very stubborn about our vision, but flexible on the details that will help us achieve our mission. For example, initially NetBeez was mostly a hardware solution, based on hardware agents that used the Raspberry Pi. With the evolution of the network technologies (e.g. cloud and app-hosting) and changes in end-user habits (remote/hybrid work), we started also offering software deployment options for our agents (e.g. virtual machines, Linux, docker, and Windows/Mac endpoints). The core concept of network monitoring from the user perspective is still the same. NetBeez just expanded to more network environments than those we originally conceived the solution for. For the future, we expect NetBeez to evolve based on where networking technologies are heading to.
Thank you all!
Lastly, we want to remind ourselves that NetBeez wouldn’t exist if it was not for the help of our team, customers, investors, and partners. Without everyone’s contribution there would be no NetBeez, so thank you all.
In conclusion, the fight against bad end-user experience is far from over, and there’s still much work to be done. Meanwhile, we recognize that the world is more connected than it was ten years ago, and we believe that our contributions have helped facilitate this.