Cisco continues its redefinition today, with news the networking company is buying WebEx Communications, the online conferencing service. You can argue, I suppose, that WebEx sucks up bits, and Cisco sells bit-shunting equipment, so they’re complementary, but pretty much everything online sucks up bits, so by that measure we should expect CiscoTube and a search engine next. And while that’s possible, I doubt it will happen.
Cisco has done some unusual acquisitions lately, with this one, plus its earlier this year year buy of Five Across, a social network construction tool. Where does it think it’s going? It’s really not clearn, other than that the company didn’t think it was exposed enough to consumers and to technology markets growing faster than its core networking business, so now it has some call options, not to mention a grounded way of forcing itself to stay on top of trends it might otherwise have ignored.
Beyond that … let’s just say that while this is not your father’s Cisco, it’s not clear just whose Cisco it is becoming either.