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Partner Power On Display At N+I

One of the more interesting trends of last week's NetWorld + Interop show was the number of partnerships on display, especially those between major players like IBM and Brocade, and Hewlett-Packard and Broadcom, which paired at N+I to tout Broadcom's new Gigabit Ethernet controller.

Even Cisco's John Chambers spoke highly of partnerships, as one small (and pretty much overlooked) nugget in his keynote speech. By putting partnerships (such as its recent announcements with IBM and Ericsson) on an equal plane with acquisitions and internal product developments, Cisco gave credence to the idea that one vendor simply can't get everything done anymore.

Even Cisco's partners were pairing with partners, as service provider Time Warner Telecom
(a Cisco customer) brought along one of its own customers to talk about its Metro Ethernet service offerings. Clearly, many of today's networking problems take more than one company to solve; for IT professionals, having vendors working together means a better, faster path to solutions for complex problems.