Light Reading

Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper

Craig Matsumoto
News Analysis
Craig Matsumoto
9/12/2011
50%
50%
Repost This

For years, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) generally avoided mentioning Juniper Networks Inc. (NYSE: JNPR) by name.

That changed Monday when Cisco unveiled a special Juniper-ragging website at www.overpromisesunderdelivers.net.

Cisco's claim is that Juniper has yet to deliver on some of its most highly anticipated products, such as QFabric, and hasn't technically come through on certain promises, such as the claim of a single operating system for all products.

This being Cisco, they make their point using video.



Put another way: Are you ready for some football?!

This is new. For years, Cisco avoided discussing its competitors directly, at least in keynotes and media briefings, and in many cases wouldn't even mention Juniper by name.

Cisco executives haven't precisely spelled out why they're changing tactics, but it sounds like the company has been frustrated with -- even jealous of -- the market's love affair with Juniper during the past year or so.

"Some vendors have repeatedly over-promised and under delivered, and still somehow receive credit for their vision!" writes Rob Lloyd, Cisco's executive vice president of worldwide operations, in a blog entry published Monday.

Cisco's stagnant stock price has made it a Wall Street punching bag lately, forcing moves such as the closure of Flip camera unit. Some are questioning the company's entire future and wondering why CEO John Chambers hasn't been ousted.

Juniper, by contrast, went back to being a bright up-and-comer, thanks to products such as QFabric and MobileNext (Juniper's mobile packet core, previously named Falcon). Its stock price had been climbing, although the economy put a stop to that. (See Juniper Darkens 2011 Outlook.)

A major part of Cisco's needling centers on the amount of time it's taken to bring these products to market, but Juniper is refuting those points, according to a Monday Wall Street Journal story (registration required). Falcon, for instance, has been shipping for a while, Executive Vice President Stefan Dyckerhoff is quoted as saying.

Might Juniper retaliate? Actually, considering that Cisco competitors rarely have a problem calling out Cisco by name, that question feels a little obvious.

The more serious question might be whether the campaign could backfire. Cisco had some sound PR reasons for not acknowledging Juniper by name. Juniper executives could pretty easily claim that Cisco's new tactics are a reaction to Juniper's power in the market.

UPDATE: Juniper has issued this statement from David Shane, vice president of global corporate communications: "We're not going to comment on a competitor's publicity stunt. Customers tell us they want an alternative to the legacy approach, and we're focused on delivering innovation for them. It appears as if Cisco has once again lost focus."

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

(37)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 4   >   >>
Michelle Donegan
50%
50%
Michelle Donegan,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:15 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


Watching Cisco's video is an entertaining way to start my week, and I have the same question Craig raised -- I wonder how/if this could backfire.

Sarah Reedy
50%
50%
Sarah Reedy,
User Rank: Blogger
12/5/2012 | 4:54:14 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


Wow, this definitely makes them look a little insecure. The site is pretty aggressive too -- I think just the white paper might have been more effective. It'll be interesting to see Juniper's response.

digits
50%
50%
digits,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:14 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


My initial reaction is -- why is Cisco suddenly kicking off? Is it seeing worried that Juniper is streets ahead in term of product capabilities? 


This looks at first glance like the action of a company worried about a rival and not so confident in its own abilities.

DCITDave
50%
50%
DCITDave,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:13 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


Is anything the ad alleges true?


Does Juniper announce products and hype them for an entire year before they show up in the market? Is using Juniper a perceived risk because they don't have products out on time?


It'd be interesting to hear from a Juniper customer on these issues.


 

photon2
50%
50%
photon2,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:13 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


Video is funny.  Analogy is not.  It's easy to get this reversed on Cisco, and ALU must just be laughing it's way to the next outstanding quarter.

Carol Wilson
50%
50%
Carol Wilson,
User Rank: Blogger
12/5/2012 | 4:54:13 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


This seems kinda bush league to me. How much time/effort is going into writing and producing a web site to trash a competitor? The video is funny for the first 15-20 seconds, but like a lot of SNL sketches, gets a bit tedious.

^Eagle^
50%
50%
^Eagle^,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:12 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


Note: Years ago, I went to several Cisco sales training seminars.  One of them led by Chambers himself.  (I worked for a major Cisco rep at one time).  


In those trainings, Cisco consistently stated that the way to sell against competition was to NOT bash the competition but to win based on selling the strong features of the Cisco platforms and show that there was better value and better performance.  We were told to never attack the competition and never bash them in any way.


Given this, these moves by Cisco makes me wonder if things are more "rotten in Denmark" than we outsiders believe.


seems pretty desperate in many levels.


I wonder is Cisco now training the sales teams to take this "new" approach?  if so, it would be interesting to measure the results.


sailboat

^Eagle^
50%
50%
^Eagle^,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:12 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


I am sure that this approach by Cisco is working to inspire confidence in it's customers.  we all know how much we enjoy FUD.  Especially FUD warmed by scorched earth.


hmmm, let me see:


1) FUD and scorched earth advertising and blogs.... shows fear not confidence


2) insiders selling like crazy at Cisco..... hmmmmmm.


3) Cisco throwing obscene amounts of money to pirate sales staff from Juniper... to attempt to slow down Juniper's sales by taking talent via showering them with $$...   This sure shows confidence doesn't it? This strategy both causes Cisco to SPEND more money on sales and also at the same time insults customers.  Does Cisco really think that customers make the buying decisions for large network applications based on the personality and skill of executive level sales teams?  (I think for these kind of purchases, the decisions are mostly based on technology, performance of the platforms, support, and price... the sales teams are only facilitators).  I think customers are a bit more intelligent that that.


Really, absolutely, I am sure that these moves are helping Cisco.....  yes sirree!  more FUD please!


sailboat

scottdTBR
50%
50%
scottdTBR,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:54:11 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


I don't like this move - there is way too much downside and not enough upside for Cisco. It also reminds me of the ill-fated "Cisco Sucks" marketing campaign that switching vendor Cabletron executed back in the mid-90's. Customers thought it was petty and all it did was make Cabletron look like a bunch of immature schmucks (not that they were perceived as incredibly mature to begin with).

yarn
50%
50%
yarn,
User Rank: Light Sabre
12/5/2012 | 4:54:10 PM
re: Cisco Starts Totally Ragging on Juniper


Wow, this is really a great example of gorilla marketing!


The video is a bit cheesy but that's how I like my pizza:-)

Page 1 / 4   >   >>
Flash Poll
LRTV Custom TV
Optimizing SDN & NFV Architectures Through Application Awareness

4|23|14   |   6:24   |   (0) comments


Jerome Tollet, CTO at Qosmos, explains how network equipment vendors and operators deploying SDN and NFV can take advantage of network intelligence delivered by DPI to strengthen products and services.
LRTV Custom TV
Wind River Demonstrates Carrier-Grade Software for NFV

4|22|14   |   5:00   |   (0) comments


Wind River VP of Product Management, Glenn Seiler, takes a look the industry's first and only complete NFV software platform designed specifically for the unique carrier-grade and high-performance needs of telecom networks.
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Eyes Big Technology Shifts

4|16|14   |   03:02   |   (4) comments


US cable engineers are facing a lot of heavy lifting in the coming years, notes Light Reading Cable/Video Practice Leader Alan Breznick.
LRTV Custom TV
Maximizing Customer Experience & Assuring Service Delivery in an IP World

4|15|14   |   4:57   |   (0) comments


Steven Shalita, VP of Marketing, NetScout Systems, Inc., discusses the challenges cable/MSO operators face in assuring the delivery of new IP-based services. Key points include the value of proactively managing performance, and using rich analytics and operational intelligence to better understand service and usage trends, make smarter business decisions and ...
LRTV Documentaries
Bye-Bye DVD: Consumers Embrace Digital Video

4|10|14   |   04:17   |   (7) comments


Veteran video analyst Colin Dixon, founder and principal analyst of nScreenMedia, says research shows 56% are using digital video already.
LRTV Documentaries
Video: TW Cable Puts Multicast Gateways to the Test

4|8|14   |   04:13   |   (1) comment


Tom Gonder, a chief architect at Time Warner Cable, explains how its trial of multicast gateways is impacting IP-based video plans.
LRTV Custom TV
Managing & Monetizing Big Data in Operator Environments

4|7|14   |     |   (1) comment


At Mobile World Congress, Gigamon's Director of Service Provider Solutions, Andy Huckridge, and Heavy Reading Analyst Sarah Wallace discuss the 'big data' issues facing carriers and operators today.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Data Center Energy – Build Your Data Center in a Modular Way

4|7|14   |   2:13   |   (0) comments


Dr. Fang Liangzhou, VP Network Energy Product Line, shared his thoughts about the challenges for data centers during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Agile Network Solution – An Overview of Huawei's Agile Network Solution

4|7|14   |   2:31   |   (0) comments


Ajay Gupta, Director of Product Marketing, Networking Product Line, gives an overview of the Agile Network Solutions during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s eLTE Voice Trunking, Video and Data Applied for Railways

4|7|14   |   1:38   |   (0) comments


Gottfried Winter is the Sales Director at Funkwerk, a German specialist in GSM-r terminals and a long-time partner of Huawei. At CeBIT 2014, Winter talks to Light Reading about this partnership and the integration of enhanced voice trunking, video and data functions.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
LeaseWeb Speaks Highly of Huawei's Datacenter Products

4|7|14   |   1:37   |   (0) comments


Rene Olde Olthof, Operations Director LeaseWeb, talks about the next data center transformation during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Documentaries
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture

4|3|14   |   07:11   |   (8) comments


Shamim Akhtar, Comcast's architect and senior director of network strategy, explains why the cable company is moving to a more distributed network architecture.
Hot Topics
WhatsApp Threatens Carrier VoLTE
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/18/2014
The Hungry, Hungry Cloud
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/22/2014
Who's Ready to Play Broadband?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/21/2014
What's the Magic of Private Equity?
Carolyn Mathas, 4/22/2014
AT&T Turns Up Gig Heat in 21 New Metros
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/21/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed