Is Cisco still Switchzilla? Or is Huawei the new Chipzilla?
Dis is not welcome so we're going to diss it. That's Cisco's view, in a nutshell, of Nutanix jumping on its UCS servers as a means of selling its hyper-converged system software into the Cisco customer base and channel. A source in the channel slipped us an email Cisco sent to some of its partners – here's the crucial portion …
Odd that they wouldn't want to keep Nutanix in the tent as opposed to out of the tent... I don't think any sales rep from Cisco is wondering which hyperconverged systems Cisco would rather have them sell, just skew the quota recognition towards HyperFlex... but you would think they would want to keep Nutanix in the bag, if for no other reason than to more easily be able to flip people to HyperFlex in the future.
So they lost the OEM with Dell basically although it is still available now, EMC will push vxrack, Chad was soft but quite serious about the future of how that will work.
Now this...which makes sense strategically for Cisco - I know it is not the same thing as the OEM stuff, but still, it hits Nutanix hard.
That IPO is not looking so great for this year I think now ...
So Simplivity, Maxta, and Pivot3 can stay in the program? So they must not be a "...direct competitor of Cisco's own technology". No threat from those three then.
When did Cisco BUY Springpath? Hyperflex is Springpath's technology unless Cisco buys them.
Well, I work in purchasing and married to lawyer who works on precisely those issues (as well as transfer pricing malarkey but that's for another day).
The short of it is that it's legit because it's their "program" so their rules. A bit like AOSP and Google. If you go AOSP do as you please but if you want to bundle Google apps on the phone who have to play by their rules.
And of course, regarding the other members of the program, it may be clear that they are not competitors to Cisco today but there's no re-assurance that Cisco won't ever decide to branch out hence rendering members in direct competition beyond their will. Very far fetched but as a re-seller you may want to consider it.
What a sorry state of affairs, ironically started by a handful of startups, followed by a bunch of desperate x86 server vendors who were locked out of the cloud, now all clamouring for growth, leading to incestuous relationships that no-one can make sense of, LOL!
With SimpliVity suing Springpath for IP infringement and Pivot3, Maxta and Atlantis also around as distractions for HyperFlex, you wonder if Cisco will kick all of them out from their Solution Partner Program. Can't just pick on poor Nutanix alone, can you Cisco? The FTC would be interested in this situation. I wonder what customers are thinking.
For all the years I've been in the industry, it's not unique to have companies that partner and compete. Dell and EMC had coopetition on the Clariion arrays for years. The coopetition is only successful when both sides agree to the rules. When one side makes their own rules then it gets away from coopetition and gets to competition. Seems pretty straightforward to me.
From Nutanix's viewpoint, they will not want to make & support their own hardware, hence why the renewed deal with Dell makes sense, and why they are prepared to self-support on CISCO.
But CISCO want a walled garden that they alone control, which goes in the face of Software-Defined in the truest sense.
It is my suspicion that Nutanix has the means to properly commoditise the server platform into an SDDC, and so is a real threat to CISCO's UCS margins & customer control.
The question will then remain: how much control can CISCO maintain inside their (possibly shrinking) garden, or how much control will customer start to reclaim by such commoditisation.
Interesting times ...
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