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Cisco has bet the farm on its Unified Computing System (UCS)
Thu, 5/26/11 - 10:23am    View comments

CiscoIDCRecently market intelligence provider - International Data Corporation (IDC), initiated coverage of Cisco's Unified Computing System (UCS) server platform within IDC's 1Q11 Server Tracker research publication, which provides insight into customer trends by delivering geography-specific vendor, family, and model-level detail across all server segments.

IDC reported that Cisco maintained just a mere 1.6% factory revenue share overall, with particular strength in x86-based blades in North America. View the top 5 corporate family, worldwide server systems factory revenue for the first quarter of 2011 (revenues are in millions):

Server Systems Factory Revenue

Furthermore according to IDC:

Bladed Server Market Results

"The blade market continued its strong growth in the quarter with factory revenue increasing 23.8% year over year, with shipment growth increasing by 5.4% compared to 1Q10.

"Overall, bladed servers, including x86, EPIC, and RISC blades, accounted for $1.8 billion in revenues, representing 15.2% of quarterly server market revenue. Nearly 90% of all blade revenue is driven by x86-based blades, which now represent 20.5% of all x86 server revenue.

"HP maintained the number 1 spot in the server blade market in 1Q11 with 50.0% revenue share, while IBM finished with 20.2% revenue share.

"Cisco and Dell rounded out the top 4 with 9.4% and 8.4% factory revenue share, respectively."

Jed ScaramellaAlso in IDC's report, fellow Babson College grad - Jed Scaramella states:

"Blade vendors fared well in the quarter, with the blade revenue growing at twice the rate of the total market. Blades represent a higher-value sale for server vendors, being increasingly deployed in converged systems to support virtual environments. The larger memory footprints and I/O interconnects needed have resulted in a continual increase in average selling prices for blade systems.

"After several years of being a highly consolidated market where the top 3 vendors accounted for over 80% of blade revenue, the recent entry of Cisco has introduced a viable new competitor to the market."

Nevertheless, even though Cisco has bet the farm (at least in my opinion) on its Unified Computing System (UCS), rumors circulating within Cisco say:

"Cisco has lost more resales from IBM than its gained in sales revenue from the UCS product line."

How Cisco uses new-market entry products to create an eco-system of services to enhance the value of Cisco's new technology offerings: How Cisco

Deployment diagram of the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS):

Cisco Unified Computing System

Calculate power requirements for all Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) blade and rack-mount servers:

Cisco UCS Power Calculator

View the Cisco/Intel Server Performance Summary as of May 6, 2011:

Server Performance Summary

Compare Cisco UCS B-Series Blade Server models:

Cisco UCS B-Series Blade Server Model Comparison

Related story:

How Cisco defeats HP in blade server deals

What's your take, do you agree with me that Cisco has bet the farm on its Unified Computing System (UCS)?

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