Network hardware is one of the largest IT markets in the world. It is split between offerings for Telcos/Service Providers and Enterprises. The former is twice the size of the latter -$116b v $52b in 2016. However it has been on a steeper downward slide over the last few years (see Figure). you’ll be interested in looking at the market players and shares.
Cisco is the largest player overall – its 19.9% share of the overall market is due to its complete dominance of the Enterprise market where it has a 55.7% market share in 2015 (see Figure). Huawei was in second place with an 18.6% share mainly due to its leadership of the Service Provider market where it had a 24.4% share. The next three vendors are European – Ericsson (8.8%), Nokia (7.9%) and Alcatel Lucent (6.7%): although there will only be two as the acquisition of Alcatel Lucent by Nokia is completed shortly. It should surely be a concern for the EU that there are so few indigenous IT suppliers – none in the top server, PC, printer, or storage systems markets. At least for now their presence in the network market helps balance the historical strength of American and growing importance of the Chinese. There is plenty of opportunity for disruption in the network market from virtualisation – NFV in the Service Provider and SDN in the Enterprise markets in particular. Cisco’s dominance of the Enterprise market is slowing the movement towards SDN – its own ACI approach requires customers to purchase its Nexus switches. 2016 will be a better year for Enterprise networks as many customers will need to upgrade their equipment.