3Com falls to the barbarians, but it's really about HP vs Cisco
HP, once a humble printer company, is to acquire 3Com, once a high-flying networking equipment maker, for $2.7 billion. Not too many years ago that power relationship would have been inconceivable; 3Com was doing cutting-edge work and had a towering reputation while HP was being muscled out of printers by Asian companies. The acquisition has less to do with the past than with the future though. Cisco, the seemingly unstoppable force in computer networking, has been moving into the server business. This threatens HP's long-term strategy of providing everything you need for a corporate data centre, which it is trying to build from the servers up. To win – even to survive – HP has to shore up its pretty weak offering in that area quickly. 3Com was simply the fastest and cheapest way to do so.
Read more: New York Times, Washington Post