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Enterprise Policy Media/Telecom

HPE, Cisco, Dell Brace for Tariffs, but Customer Impact Uncertain

On Monday, Cisco Systems, the world’s largest maker of networking equipment, is expected to begin raising prices on major products like routers and switches, according to a person with knowledge of its plans, as a wave of new tariffs imposed by the Trump administration on goods imported to the U.S. from China go into effect.

The latest stage in the administration’s escalating trade war with China promises to be unpleasant for the technology industry and its customers, but precisely how ugly depends on how  long it lasts. For the moment, most popular consumer products—smartphones, fitness trackers, smart speakers and so on—have been exempted from the new tariffs. More affected are networking and server companies like Juniper Networks, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Cisco and Dell that offer switches, routers and servers with components subject to the tariffs. That could end up hurting their customers in the wireless and cloud computing industries, although the real impact may not be felt unless the trade war continues into next year.

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