The report, based on obtained documents, suggests that the networking giant triggered the pricing action to prod sales of its newer gear such as the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor 2T engine, the Catalyst 4500 Supervisor 8E, the Catalyst 3850 and 3650 at the expense of some older equipment, including the Catalyst 6500 Supervisor 720, Catalyst 3750 and 3560 switches. The price increases are slated to go live Nov. 2, according to the report.
Cisco acknowledged it has increased the prices on the older equipment, a move somewhat counterintuitive to the conventional tactic many vendors employ to lower the price point of technology as it nears end-of-life. In this case, however, Cisco has done just the opposite, intending to make its newer switching gear more attractive to customers not only for its technology but also its price.
"There are no price increases to the new Cisco switching products that have been recently announced, including the Catalyst 2960-X, 3850, 3650, 4500E with Sup 8E, and 6800, which offer greater functionality at either the same or lower price," wrote a Cisco spokesperson in an e-mail to Network World. "There is a slight price increase for very small subset of older Catalyst models that now have a next-generation option available to customers."
Network World’s report indicated that a Catalyst 6500 distributed forwarding card had been bumped up in price by $10,000 to $25,000 and its replacement products priced at $20,000.
It will be interesting to see if Cisco’s plan bears fruit—not only if the vendor’s pricing action impedes sales of the older switch technology, but also if it spurs sales of its newer equipment. If so, if anyone else is watching such things, you might see the tactic duplicated elsewhere.