The recent HP Enterprise Business Industry Analyst Summit in Boston raised a question of what the 3Com acquisition buys HP in the networking space. Steve Hilton, the lead analyst for Analysys Mason’s Enterprise program lays out the HP argument in this Information Week SMB story, and says he isn’t buying a word of it.
“Here’s my view: The enterprises that want to purchase 3Com networking gear have already done so. Adding an HP logo to 3Com gear isn’t going to alter the landscape. Enterprises don’t buy the cheapest networking gear they can find. Networking isn’t a market that has commoditized like the server business, and while a commoditized networking business would play into HP’s hands, enterprises aren’t ready to swap out core Cisco gear in favor of alternative solutions even if they are cheaper. As I learned in Marketing 101, price implies quality.
“And as we’ve already seen, Cisco isn’t about to roll-over and allow HP to apply its high-volume, supply-chain game to the networking space. Cisco has publicly stated they won’t concede any share in the networking sector and have created a series of architectures to tackle data center, networking, UC, and a host of other high growth initiatives. In addition, last month Cisco fired a salvo across the bow of the HP battleship by discontinuing HP’s Gold level certification.”