When it comes to Cloud computing, the “Innovators Dilemma” is dead as either companies transform themselves to tackle new challenges or die a slow death. Verizon buys Terremark, Time Warner Cable buys NaviSite, Microsoft buys Skype, VMware “buys” Mozy, and more. With the pace of innovation and change at record speed and accelerating, there is no longer time to debate the pros and cons of innovation. The Deep Pockets of Legacy Software/Hardware/Service Providers = the Key to the Survival. Really? Microsoft is buying their way into the mobile space enticing developers to build applications for Windows 7 Mobile with cold hard cash. Cisco is financing purchases via Cisco Capital Finance. Now, Riverbed is buying their way into Cloud computing by purchasing Zeus. Riverbed manages and optimizes datacenter and endpoint traffic while Zeus does the same for Cloud computing traffic. Rather than revamp Riverbed’s technology for the Cloud, it’s simply easier to purchase. In essence, the “Innovators Dilemma” has become the Integration Dilemma.
Given Riverbed’s success with their acquisition of Mazu Networks and CACE Technologies of Wireshark fame, I have no doubt that they have hit another home run the with the acquisition of Zeus. I expect the Riverbed to successfully integrate Zeus’ technology across their entire product line while disrupting a market segment that they helped create.