What will be hot for Cisco in 2019?

Software, software, and more software. That seems to be the mantra for Cisco in 2019 as the company pushes software-defined WANs, cloud partnerships, improved application programs, and its over-arching drive to sell more subscription-based software licenses.

As the year closed on Cisco’s first quarter 2019 financials, the company was indeed touting its software growth, saying subscriptions were 57 percent of total software revenue, up five points year over year, and its application software businesses was up 18 percent to $1.42 billion. The company also said its security business, which is mostly software, rose 11 percent year over year to $651 million.

And that’s not to mention the company’s total product revenue was up 9 percent to $9.9 billion, which included a 9 percent growth in its switching and router business to $7.64 billion.

Not a bad way to start a year.  

So, where does Cisco go in 2019? A good place to look is the all-consuming cloud arena.

Cisco: A cloud vision

“I think that what we’re beginning to see … is that while the cloud four or five years ago was viewed as an existential threat to our business, I fundamentally believe that the cloud and the transition to the cloud that our customers are undergoing is actually driving our growth now,” Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins said at the company’s Q1 financial teleconference in November.