12/05/2005

Marconi - the death bell rings

BT announced the vendors who were going to supply kit for their 21CN network (well that should be 21C network, but hey), Marconi wasn't one of them and it has hit them hard, it's unlikely they'll survive in their current state.

A certain Italian must be turning in his grave at the state of his company and how it's fallen from its former glory (walk down the Strand and admire the Marconi building).

Access - Fujitsu and Huawei.
Metro - Alcatel, Cisco and Siemens.
Core - Cisco and Lucent.
Softswitching - Ericsson.
Optical Transmission - Ciena and Huawei.

It's quite suprising that Marconi didn't get the Softswitch business as BT already use Marconi System X digital exchanges and the Marconi softswitch is functionaly (to the user) quite similar, BT will have a big learning curve for an Ericsson platform.

What some people may be suprised about is the selection of Huawei who are a new Chinese entrant making some very good and cost effective kit, they are snapping after Cisco's business and winning it (some people are pronouncing their name as "Who Are We"). In Europe their systems are starting to appear in all sorts of networks (mainly large carriers and ISPs), but their showroom in China is meant to be the size of a football field and they have product to hit ALL ends of the telecoms and Internet sectors including mobile, customer kit, wireless etc. Chinese programmers are still very cheap, India is going to be out of business soon, and they produce good code.

Maybe Huawei will buy Marconi and save them?
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