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Two vendors finally land in the ‘Magic Quadrant’

Apr 29, 20032 mins
Cisco SystemsEnterprise Applications

* Gartner research note names Cisco, Network Appliance as eCDN leaders

When he looked at the market for enterprise content delivery equipment last year, Gartner analyst Lawrence Orans found that no vendor had yet distinguished itself as a leader in what Gartner calls its “Magic Quadrant.” This year, however, Orans places Cisco and Network Appliance in the leaders quadrant.

In his recent research note, Orans takes a look at the market and how it has evolved during the past year. Enterprise content delivery networks, or eCDNs, are no longer just about content delivery, Orans says. He says early adopters have found that deploying distributed caches are paying off as security gateways and as platforms for application acceleration.

Network Appliance earned the highest score for vision, in large part because of its efforts to support distributed data files within its caches. Cisco, however, is best positioned to capitalize on the market, Orans says. Cisco already owns more than 85% of the branch-office router market – and that’s exactly where eCDN products will go.

Start-up Storigen was noted as a vendor with good vision. The company “has a vision similar to Network Appliance’s of enabling distributed data access and collection using storage protocols such as Common Internet File System [CIFS] and Network File System [NFS].”

The other vendors mentioned in the research note – Blue Coat Systems, Novell, Stratacache, Fantastic and Nortel – are listed as niche players. Illustrating how quickly the market can change, ActiVia, which also had a place in the niche player quadrant, announced that it had filed for bankruptcy earlier this month.

“Cisco and Network Appliance are the safest choices in terms of long-term vendor viability in the eCDN market,” Orans writes. He cautions that enterprise buyers should look at short-term returns on investments made in most of these eCDN companies. The turbulence within the market isn’t over yet, he says. Expect more shakeout during the next year or so.