Cisco has taken a big step outside its traditional networking boundaries in search of additional revenue opportunity. Perhaps its most significant excursion is the one into the application software space with Eos, a social networking system that is targeted at media companies but applicable, we believe, to enterprises and network operators who want to build and sustain online communities.
It’s not clear whether Cisco has customized excessively for the media company sector or is simply looking there as a good starting point. While Eos is billed as a social network, it’s our view that it’s a community connection tool designed to allow other elements (Cisco and third parties) to be integrated into a social network and relationship framework.
Given the powerful role that social networks could play in collaboration and communications, Eos may be a very useful tool to Cisco in creating a service-layer presence in 2009, something that vendors will need to do to sustain their growth not only next year but in the next decade.