Cisco to launch $1B cloud service: report

Cisco Cloud Services expected to be detailed this morning

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Cisco this morning will announce a new $1 billion foray into cloud computing called Cisco Cloud Services, according to the Wall Street Journal.

From a Reuters account of the Journal story that sits behind a paywall:

Enterprise hardware spending is dwindling across the globe as companies cope with shrinking budgets, slowing or uncertain economies and a fundamental migration to cloud computing, which reduces demand for equipment by outsourcing data management and computing needs.

"Everybody is realizing the cloud can be a vehicle for achieving better economics (and) lower cost," the Journal quoted Rob Lloyd, Cisco's president of development and sales as saying. "It does not mean that we're embarking on a strategy to go head-to-head with Amazon."

Details of that distinction should be clearer today as Cisco is expected to announce specifics of the initiative this morning.

The company is only  one of many upping its bets on a cloud market dominated by Amazon Web Services, including IBM's recently announced $1 billion investment in a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) effort and Microsoft's continuing evolution in that direction.

(12 cloud computing companies to watch)

Today, though, some are already questioning Cisco's move, or at least its timing.

"Cisco to spend $1B to launch a cloud service," tweeted longtime industry watcher Dan Lyons. "Also, 2006 called and wants its business plan back." 

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