Five Companies That Came To Win This Week

Apple Has Another Quarter That Makes Rivals Want To Cry

At this point, it's like a broken record: Apple reports earnings, a bunch of superlatives get used by Apple executives about iPad and iPhone sales, the stock skyrockets, and everyone sitting on the sidelines gets this gnawing regret about not having invested in Apple a long time ago. So it was this week when Apple shared details of its Q3 earnings.

Apple sold 9.2 million iPads during the quarter, compared to 3.3 million during the previous year's quarter. Apple is literally selling every iPad it can make, and 86 percent of the Fortune 500 are either deploying or testing iPad. For the iPhone, this figure is a dizzying 91 percent. Oh, and Apple says it has $76.2 billion in cash at the moment.

Wash, rinse, repeat.

Huawei Symantec Sets Sights On U.S. Networking Market

Huawei, a China-based $28 billion telecom powerhouse, is taking aim at the U.S. enterprise networking market with the introduction of an Ethernet networking product line from its Huawei Symantec subsidiary.

This week at Huawei Symantec's first-ever North America Partner Summit, held in Cupertino, Calif., company executives laid out their strategy for competing with Cisco and establishing a foothold in the converged infrastructure space.

"A lot of companies compete with Cisco," Jun Xu, solutions architect at Huawei Symantec, told CRN this week. "But Huawei Symantec can offer a better price if you're just competing on a box level."

Dell Adds Networking To Its Mix With Force10 Acquisition

Dell added a key piece to its converged networking and data center portfolio this week with its acquisition of Force10 Networks, a San Jose, Calif-based firm that did about $200 million in revenue last year.

Dell described Force10 as a "natural complement" to its server product line, and Brad Anderson, senior vice president of Dell's Enterprise Solutions Group, said the deal will help Dell raise its profile in the networking space.

"As we build our channel partner network out, [VARs] are asking us to put more products and more complete solutions into their portfolio. This is a catalyst to significantly expand our networking presence in our existing channel and to grow the channel with all the partners Force 10 brings to us," Anderson told CRN this week.

Shoretel Says Now's The Time For VARs To Get Aggressive

ShoreTel CEO Peter Blackmore this week told partners at the company's Champion Partner Conference in Chicago that he intends to triple ShoreTel's investment in mobility, including research and development.

Blackmore said there's a window opening in the unified communications space resulting from Cisco's turmoil and restructuring and Avaya's integration of the Nortel channel. "We're building momentum, we can sustain that and improve it, and with mobility, we can exceed even our wildest dreams," Blackmore said at the event.

IBM Says Beating Oracle And HP In Hardware Sales

IBM reported healthy Q2 revenue and profit, and IBM CFO and Senior Vice President Mark Loughridge wasted no opportunity in attributing this success to IBM's ability to displace hardware competitors like HP and Oracle.

Noting that IBM has taken $2.3 billion in hardware systems business from the two rivals in the last two and a half years, Loughridge also said IBM's sales of hardware systems and technology products grew 17 percent during the quarter.

"We continued our success in competitive takeouts," Loughridge said in a call with financial analysts. "This quarter we had over 250 competitive displacements which resulted in over $300 million in business." The CFO said roughly 60 percent of those competitive wins came at Oracle's expense and 30 percent from Hewlett-Packard.