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Cisco commits to $20bn consumer target

by David Mercer | 12月 11, 2007

At Cisco's C-Scape event today John Chambers confirmed the company's plan to become a $10-20bn player in the consumer electronics market. Cisco has made a number of consumer acquisitions in recent years, the major one being Scientific Atlanta, but multiplying its revenues from today's $3.5bn by five times or more is a tremendous challenge, and will require the mass adoption of IP connected devices that has yet to emerge. I am concerned over the next day or so to hear how Cisco plans to manage its customer relationships as the connected consumer market expands. An illustration of the difficulties that lie ahead is that its Media Solutions Group is supporting content players keen to distribute digital content to connected devices. That's fine, but what wasn't said is that media companies also want to cut Cisco's traditional customers, service providers, out of the loop. We also heard from Eric Huggers, now of the BBC and for many years at Microsoft, through telepresence from London. Eric gave us some fascinating data on how the Internet is transforming one of the world's leading public broadcasters. Today all online activity accounts for around 1.3PB (petabytes) a month, and 2/3 of this is audio streaming and podcast downloads. Huggers expects this to increase by 500TB a month on 25th December when the upgraded iPlayer is launched. By the end of next year he expected all BBC content to be driving 5PB a month. In spite of the web 2.0 hype, I remain cautious about some of the supposed benefits being suggested. Today's classic was from the opening video, when a user announced her delight at being able to turn on the car radio and having her her emails read to her. Clearly she doesn't get some of the emails I receive. Well, maybe it just won't be a car radio in the future, but when I turn on the car radio I want to hear radio, and that's enough of a challenge here in the US, even with digital satellite. The car is one of the last refuges from intrusive communications, and long may it stay that way. Add to Technorati Favorites
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