It hasn’t even been a month and there are already cracks in the much- vaunted peace accord between Cisco Systems (CSCO) and Microsoft Corp. (MSFT).
The chief executives of the two companies, John Chambers and Steve Ballmer, got on stage last month — together with Charlie Rose, playing the role of peacemaker — and declared a truce.
The two giants of the tech industry assured their corporate customers that they would play ball and would ensure that their respective enterprise communications offerings — hardware and software — work together.
While we didn’t believe in this faux peace, we were happy to forget all about it. Until, that is, we came across this post by Joe Burton, chief technology officer of unified communications at Cisco.
Burton takes some not-so-subtle swipes at PC-based unified communication solutions. Now, he isn’t explicitly citing Microsoft, but…you decide for yourself.
* Can any business wait around to get outpaced by competitors while they experiment with PC- or email-client-based architecture for unified communications?
* Can they afford the 18-24 month wait for a software-client-based call control architecture that will be marginally mature and deployable?
* Can they really depend on PC “experts,” who are learning on-the-job to implement a business class unified communications solution that meets their communication requirements?
Burton points out that instead of desktop or PC-centric solutions (read Microsoft), unified communications have to be network-based (read Cisco).
For businesses waiting to evaluate PC (or email) client-based-software architecture for unified communications, the opportunity cost associated with this inertia is difficult to justify.
Allan Leinwand in this post had outlined why the so-called peace would be short-lived.
5 thoughts on “So Much For A Microsoft-Cisco Peace Accord”
How is this surprising to anyone? Since when has Microsoft ever played nice with anyone? You don’t get a monopoly on desktops into perpetuity by playing nice.
Well put, though i hear there is a press conference tomorrow jointly hosted by Sun and Microsoft – another peace accord.
Comeon Om, both the CEOs I think were fairly explicit that they will compete just as aggressively as before — Steve saying Cisco will be a respectable competitor and Chambers making an equivalent, if not more aggressive, remark — then why do you have to spin it out this way? Sensationalism?
Yes each of them has a right to trumpet their product to the extent of demeaning and downplaying the other brutally, but tell the world when they make it incompatible-ly so. If you go read their PRs, their stmts, they were explicit that they are coming together only because enterprise customers wanted them to work together. Sheesh!
Sad to see you bank on sensationalist (untrue) blogs! Tsk Tsk Tsk!
I agree with “shmoe”. The pact is only for interoperability. This is to take on the open source solutions like asterisk which by virtue of being open, are more flexible****
By allowing interoperability more units of both cisco and msft products will be sold. This does not mean that cisco and msft will not compete with each other.
I would also draw your attention to this blog post by MSFT’s head UC guru where he says, SURPRISE!, that software is most important for UC and networks are just “plumbing.”
We never said we would not compete. Competition, as you know, drives innovation and that’s where customers gain.