Three incumbent vendors have long dominated the network infrastructure market: Cisco Systems, Juniper Networks, and Arista Networks. As established incumbents, these three companies have long had the luxury of high prices in spite of uneven quality, as the alternative has been small or no-name vendors who don’t offer the ‘single throat to choke’ enterprise buyers typically prefer.
Arrcus hopes to disrupt this status quo with its ArcOS Network Operating System. ArcOS is a software offering that runs on inexpensive, ‘white box’ gear. Arrcus built it from the ground up to be modular and scalable, thus addressing many of the issues of the incumbents’ products while offering greater flexibility and Internet scale.
In the short term, Arrcus is happy simply to take market share away from the incumbents, especially among the Fortune 100 and the telcos.
However, given ArcOS is a true operating system in the sense that it both abstracts the underlying hardware while providing an execution environment for any network applications companies care to build on it, Arrcus’ long-term strategy likely centers on building an ecosystem of software-defined network applications.