Network equipment maker Cisco Systems Inc. has spent the last several years trying to convince investors that they are truly embracing the cloud. Now they have got the approval seal from a software company Salesforce.com Inc. The two bay Area companies announced yesterday that they would jointly develop and market products that use each other’s offerings, as both companies work to build their cloud businesses in an increasingly competitive field.
Cisco and Salesforce plan to work together to integrate their platforms focused on customer service and the internet-of-things besides many other things, a nascent field connecting everyday items, such as light bulbs, to the web.
“Every company that’s come before and tried to do this has created a new island,” said Rowan Trollope, Cisco’s senior VP.
While Salesforce was born in the cloud and has been able to take advantage of the advancements in mobile and data analytics, Cisco’s glory days were back when businesses bought their own infrastructure — in Cisco’s case networking gear like big switches and routers
Cisco said the move would “eliminate the friction users experience today,” and Salesforce said it would “simplify the customer experience.”
Cloud services providers are facing a balance between opening up their services and making it easier to integrate with competitors products, while also soloing their services to keep tight hold on their current subscribers and their data.
The integration deal is the newest collaboration between potential competitors in the increasingly crowded cloud-services field, which includes services from Microsoft Corp., Alphabet Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and Oracle Corp.
For Cisco, its users are using cloud services and the numbers are increasing day by day like those offered by Amazon, instead of in-house data and computing centers built with Cisco’s hardware. In response, instead of offering its own on-demand computing over the internet, Cisco has adopted a strategy of acting as an intermediary between companies and operators of such services.
For Salesforce, the integration is notable for not being an acquisition.
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