Updated from 8:40 a.m. EDT
is overhauling its product strategy in the wake of rival
into the server market.
The Billerica, Mass.-based firm has traditionally sold InfiniBand-based switches, but it is now planning its first 10-Gbit/s Ethernet offerings in an attempt to claw share from Cisco's Nexus switch.
that the launch of Cisco's Unified Computing System (UCS) has completely changed the dynamic of the
market. By selling servers, Cisco has issued a challenge to its long-standing partners like
, according to Asaf Somekh, Voltaire's vice president of marketing.
"With that recent Cisco move, they created a great opportunity for us," said Somekh, explaining that Cisco partners such could be on the lookout for a networking buddy.
"It became clear that once Cisco became a server company, the server companies would not sit idle," he added. "We see it as an all-out war here between the server companies and Cisco."
Whereas InfiniBand offers high performance, 10-Gbit/s Ethernet is aimed at firms connecting large numbers of servers across multiple data centers and represents a change in direction for Voltaire.
"These are high-density switches, large switches that go into the heart of the data center," said Somekh. "Customers can choose based on their performance requirements if they want to use our InfiniBand product or our Ethernet product."
The switch specialist will not, however, launch its first 10-Gbit/s Ethernet products until later this year, and it plans to announce its pricing in the summer.
There could be method in Voltaire's madness, though. IBM, for example, recently
a deeper distribution deal for
routers and switches in what was seen as a shot across the bows of Cisco. H-P has already taken a retaliatory strike at Cisco with the launch of its
, which it is touting as a "data center in a box."
Like Cisco's UCS, the Matrix is also a blade-based system with built-in virtualization, underlining the shifting nature of the tech landscape.
Cisco's entry into the server market has already prompted a
with H-P. Traditionally, Cisco had focused its energies on networking technology such as switches and routers, although the firm is now seeking out new revenue streams. H-P, on the other hand, has started to extend its own reach beyond PCs and servers into the networking arena with its ProCurve line.
Cisco, which reports its
after the market closes Wednesday, declined to comment on Voltaire's switch strategy.
Voltaire's shares were flat at $2.50 in Tuesday trading, while the Nasdaq fell 0.54%.