Cisco raises Catalyst switch prices by up to 67%

Price increases on older gear intended to prod users into upgrades

Cisco is raising the price on older generation Catalyst switches in an effort to prod users into buying newer gear.

According to a Cisco document obtained by Network World, Cisco is raising the price of some Catalyst 3000, 4000 and 6000 series switches and associated products by up to 67% to encourage purchase of newer equipment. The price increases do not affect the new products, which include the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor 2T engine and the Catalyst 4500 Supervisor 8E.

[PRICEY STUFF: Cisco network really was $100 million more]

It does impact the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor 720, and older Catalyst 3750 and 3560 products are affected. New Catalyst 3850 and 3650 switches do not appear on the price increase document.

Cisco confirmed the price increase on the older gear.

"There are no price increases to the new Cisco switching products that have been recently announced, including the Catalyst 2960-X, 3850, 3650, 4500E with Sup 8E, and 6800, which offer greater functionality at either the same or lower price," a company spokesperson said in an e-mailed statement. "There is a slight price increase for very small subset of older Catalyst models that now have a next generation option available to customers."

One increase impacts a Catalyst 6500 distributed forwarding card with the part number WS-F6700-DFC3CXL. The price has been raised from $15,000 to $25,000, an increase of 67%. Its replacements, parts WS-F6K-DFC4-AXL and WS-F6K-DFC4-EXL, are priced at $20,000, 33% higher than the DFC3CXL card.

The price increases take effect Nov. 2.

Resellers say Cisco at times will resort to this practice as an alternative to putting popular products on end-of-life notice. In some instances the company will charge more for a SMARTNet service contract on the old gear than for the newer replacement product, they say.

Below is a snapshot of the Catalyst 6000 product increases and replacement product pricing taken from the document.      

Switch pricing chart

Click to see: Cisco switch pricing chart

Jim Duffy has been covering technology for over 27 years, 22 at Network World. He also writes The Cisco Connection blog and can be reached on Twitter @Jim_Duffy.

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