October 14, 2010, 9:21 PM — Competition is only getting tougher for Cisco as it continues to expand in 30 or so new markets while attempting to maintain growth in its core routing and switching businesses.
In FY 2010, Cisco's fourth quarter results were disappointing, as was the company's outlook for its current fiscal 2011 first quarter. At the same time, competition with major players in its core and adjacent markets is heating up.
Which players? Below is our list of Cisco's 10 toughest rivals in a handful of its key markets, such as video, data center and collaboration.
Cisco vs. Juniper
Juniper took one-third of Cisco's share in core routing shortly after coming onto the scene in 1997. The company remains Cisco's one and only rival in core Internet routing with a 30% share of the $643 million market in the second quarter, according to Dell'Oro Group. And the two companies seek to one up each other with every announcement of a higher speed, higher density system. Current entries in this race are Cisco's recently-announced CRS-3 and Juniper's 250Gbps per slot ASICs for its T series systems.
Juniper is also Cisco's closest competitor in a number of security markets, including the $2 billion VPN hardware and software market, and in the $7 billion overall security market, which includes firewalls, VPNs, unified threat management and intrusion detection and prevention systems, according to IDC. Juniper gained a big presence in firewall/VPN systems with its 2004 acquisition of NetScreen.
Cisco vs. Alcatel-Lucent