SAN DIEGO – The head of Cisco Systems Inc. took the stage here at the company’s annual conference for engineers to crow a little bit about the overhaul it has gone through in the past year.
“With a little bit of luck,” CEO John Chambers said, Cisco has been able to set new priorities for products and largely maintain the company’s lead in most network infrastructure categories.
In routing Cisco had the biggest market share gain in its history, he said, and has 20 per cent market share in blade servers in North America.
As far as he knows, Cisco hasn’t lots a major customer during the year, he said.
During the year Cisco shed some 6,700 jobs, dropped products including most recently the Cius tablet, and put emphasis on five areas (core routing and switching, data centre, video, collaboration, and stitching them together).
The result, he suggested, was the company more than held its ground against competitors.
“Thank you for your confidence,” he said to the IT managers, network engineers, CIOs and CEOs in the audience of 17,000 in the hall and tens of thousands watching online.
Before he started his keynote, Cisco announced new products and solutions aimed at making cloud computing safer across wide area networks.
The three-part Cisco Cloud Connected Solution includes:
What the company calls Cloud Connectors, software embedded into Cisco’s Integrated Services Router G2 platform for branches, with services said to improve the performance of cloud applications. Service providers and solution providers will be able develop apps to sell differentiated services to customers.
On the infrastructure side, the Cloud Services Router (CSR) 1000v, a new virtual router that allows organizations to extend virtual private networks into the cloud. It will be available in the fourth quarter.
There’s also a new Aggregation Services Router, the ASR 1002-X (to ship in September), and server modules for the ISR G2, which allows the hosting of multiple services on a branch platform.
These include Application Visibility and Control (AVC) technology integrated into the ISR and ASR platforms, and what Cisco calls AppNav technology, which it says intelligently clusters Cisco Wide Area Application Services (WAAS) physical and virtual appliances into a single resource pool managed by a central controller.
Zeus Kerravala, principle analyst at ZK Research, said the package will help help organizations optimize connectivity to and from the cloud.
“One of the challenges of the cloud is it’s the most network-centric computing paradigm, so the performance of applications and services is highly dependent on the network functions,” he said. “So when you look at Cloud Connect solutions they are not only about how to connect to the cloud and optimize the experience but also the last element, AVC, creates the visibility that network managers need to be able to understand how things are performing.”