The names Cisco and Ferrari aren't often mentioned in the same breath.
Cisco tapped Pininfarina, the Italian firm that's been designing Ferrari sports cars since the 1950s, to make its new network switches as sleek as possible -- considering they're boxes that sit in the data center.
"We're trying to make everything smoother and more ergonomic," said Sachin Gupta, Cisco's vice president for enterprise products, in an interview at the product launch in San Francisco. "We wanted to leave no stone unturned."
Cisco spent several years and dedicated thousands of engineers toward creating a new family of switches -- the Catalyst 9000 -- built for the age of connected devices. It's no longer just computers and phones spitting out data, but everything from the lighting system to the air conditioning units connected to the network.
Gupta said that he met personally with four designers of Pininfarina at Cisco's headquarters in San Jose, California.