What is the Truth About Cisco’s Blade Server Market Share?

What is Cisco’s blade server market share?  That seems to be the mystery question that no one can really answer.  The previous IDC quarterly worldwide server report mentioned nothing about Cisco, yet readers and bloggers alike claim Cisco is #3, so what IS the true answer? 

I was fortunate enough to have some communication recently with Jed Scaramella, Research Manager, Enterprise Servers for IDC about this topic.  I asked Jed if Cisco is reporting any sort of data in regards to the revenue or units of the Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) and he replied,

Cisco has not officially begun to report server sales to IDC (or Gartner I’m told).  They have used IDC as “baseline data” in Chambers’s statements claiming the #3 position; we’ve yet to review the details to the claims, so it’s not clear what Cisco is counting and how it relates to IDC’s taxomony of server sales. (i.e., are there including software in UCS sales, which IDC doesn’t).   We expect to report Cisco server sales in the next few quarters, after the figures have been vetted and accurately equate to IBM and HP’s business. 

While it does not appear that Cisco is reporting any sales data yet I see on a Cisco blog that on Sept 15, 2010, John Chambers, Cisco CEO, mentioned in a Cisco Financial Analyst Press Conference that a) “UCS has already taken the #3 market share spot in US/Canada for x86 blade servers” and b) “Cisco expects UCS to be 50% the market share of the #2 competitor for the worldwide x86 blade server market within the next 2 quarters.” 

Now I’m confused.  I can’t find any data to support Mr. Chambers’ comments, and for Cisco to not even be on the IDC list of worldwide blade server market vendors, it’s a pretty bold statement to say they are going to be in 2nd place (where IBM is at 24.2% as of Q2 2010.)

Can ANYONE point me to some supporting data that shows that Cisco is taking over the blade server market, because I sure can’t.