Cisco Systems this week said it would respond to Terria's call for companies to supply the products and services required to build the federal government's $4.7 billion national broadband network.
Cisco's Les Williamson
(Credit: Cisco Systems)
"It's certainly in our space," Cisco's Australia and New Zealand vice president Les Williamson told ZDNet.com.au on the sidelines of the company's annual Networkers conference in Brisbane. "We'll be addressing that as a business and responding accordingly."
Williamson said Cisco could handle the needs Terria outlined, being services, equipment and architectural intellectual property requirements, and stressed Cisco's long history of delivering services and products to service providers, with 25 per cent of global revenues coming from that part of the business.
"We have a very deep history with just about every telco in Australia. So we intend to continue that," he said.
Telcos still buying
Despite claims that uncertainty on the federal government's national broadband network has made telcos drag their feet on network investments, Cisco has not seen a downturn in demand, according to Williamson.
"I haven't had anyone write to me and say because of the NBN, I'm not doing X or not doing Y," Williamson said. "Of course it's on the political landscape ... but [telcos are] getting on with their business. They need to. Because there's demand there."
He said that investment in the sector went through phases, but pegging any perceived downturn to the NBN was drawing a long bow.
Michael Boland, Cisco distinguished systems engineer, Australia and New Zealand said that business was buying and the carriers, even if they had slowed down roll-outs, still required Cisco's services.
"[Carriers are] increasing their capacity of their access networks, and the access networks are terribly predicated on broadband, but behind that they're really busy rolling out their aggregation fabrics and their cores," he said.
Cisco has been able to play a role in that, helping carriers compartmentalise and virtualise their networks to handle new forms of services, he said, as well as working architectural models to handle data in large quantities.
The change from preparation to broadband build will only be a change in the company's role, Boland said. "We move more from an infrastructural, architectural role deployment we do today to a fulfilment role," he said.
Until the roll out happens, there will still be growth, especially from the business space, which will invest in Ethernet regardless of what speed broadband is behind it, Boland said. "There is still growth. All we're discussing ... is what the slope of the curve will be for the growth. It's not like there is a downswing."
Suzanne Tindal travelled to Brisbane as a guest of Cisco Systems.