Cisco's Chambers Predicts 'Brutal' Tech Consolidation
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading
SAN FRANCISCO -- CiscoLive -- Tech companies will see "brutal, brutal consolidation," with most of today's leaders falling, Cisco CEO and Chairman John Chambers said at his keynote here Monday.
"If you look at the top companies in the industry, most of them will not exist in a meaningful way in 10 years," Chambers said. "You're going to see a brutal, brutal consolidation of the IT industry." He singled out Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) and IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM) as two companies that have failed to produce revenue.
Companies that produce standalone products rather than complete architectures will be in trouble, Chambers said. "This is where individual companies will get squeezed between Cisco and white labels."
Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), which has its own problems, has a plan for bouncing back, based on leading in SDN, collaboration, cloud, and Internet of Everything. Cisco plans to be number one in all those markets, Chambers said. (See Cisco Earnings Suffer From Carrier Weakness.)
As part of its collaboration strategy, Cisco on Monday introduced two new devices designed to bring affordable, high-quality videoconferencing to the desktop. The DX80 is a high-performance videoconferencing system that doubles as a computer monitor, while the DX70 has a smaller display with the same videoconferencing hardware. (See Cisco Wants to Tidy Up Desktop Videoconferencing.)
Cisco's Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) is core to its SDN strategy. "We will be the best implementation of SDN in the world," Chambers said. As part of ACI, Cisco introduced its WAN Automation Engine Sunday and tools for integrating virtual and physical networks on Friday. Also on Sunday, top Cisco executives discussed how SDN can help cut costs, increase agility and revenue for enterprises and service providers. (See Cisco Intros Automated WAN Management, Cisco Integrates Virtual, Physical Networks, and Cisco Drops the S-Bomb.)
And Intercloud, a network of clouds built by Cisco and service provider partners, is key to Cisco’s cloud strategy, driving Cisco from top private cloud vendor to top of hybrid cloud, Chambers said. (See Cisco's Cloud Bet: What's in It for SPs?.)
Jim Grubb, Cisco chief demonstration officer, took the stage to show how the Internet of Everything can be used to improve railroad performance, achieving, it is claimed, 40% more usage out of existing tracks with increased safety. These kinds of improvements will be available for every form of transportation, Chambers said.
Alan Matula, executive vice president and CIO of Royal Dutch Shell, then joined Chambers to describe how that company is working with Cisco to improve shale oil mining, which requires drilling hundreds of wells. Cisco helps Shell collect information about those wells to improve efficiency.
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