On October 23rd, Cisco announced its
acquisition of Richardson, TX based Navini Networks, a manufacturer of
WiMax access hardware for $330M. Where does Navini fit into Cisco’s suite of
access and network technologies? It’s a step closer to taking on a more
fully-fleshed out Ubiquitous Mobility story, something Forrester was expecting,
if not urging Cisco to embark upon in recent
. Cisco will not, of course, stake its infrastructure business on
Navini technology out of the gate. In the short term, Navini and its WiMax
holdings will allow Cisco to take on competitors in emerging markets such as
Huawei, making use of WiMax to services constituencies previously outside Cisco’s
core market for networking gear due to a dearth of WAN connectivity. Longer-term,
I full expect to see Cisco take on more traditional (developed) markets with WiMax-enabled
local access networking gear, competing with expected product developments from Motorola and Nortel.