Cisco Beefs Up Wireless Portfolio - InformationWeek

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10/5/2010
09:05 AM
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Cisco Beefs Up Wireless Portfolio

Mobility has become the watchword in corporations. As employees work with a growing variety of handheld devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and netbooks, companies need to put the proper network infrastructure in place to support such connections. Cisco has tried to address such issues by upgrading its Borderless Network Architecture.

Mobility has become the watchword in corporations. As employees work with a growing variety of handheld devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and netbooks, companies need to put the proper network infrastructure in place to support such connections. Cisco has tried to address such issues by upgrading its Borderless Network Architecture.The architecture includes new wireless, switching, routing, and security products. The company's Aironet 1040 Series Access Point features 2x2 multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) connections that deliver six times the throughput of existing wireless networks. The device's radio resource management monitoring functions provide self-healing capabilities that reduce the number of dead spots in each wireless LAN. The device supports the 802.3af Power over Ethernet (PoE) standard and uses 12.95 watts of power.

In addition, the vendor unveiled the Cisco Catalyst 4500E Series switch, which offers 848G bps of system bandwidth and 384 Power over Ethernet Plus (PoEP) ports. The new Cisco ASR 1001 edge router delivers up to 5G bps of throughput. The Cisco ASA 5585-X Adaptive Security Appliance supports 20G bps of multi-protocol throughput and 35G bps of large packet throughput; 10,000 VPN connections; and 350,000 connections per second and 8 million total connections. IPSEC IKEv2 support has been added to Cisco's AnyConnect 3.0 endpoint management system.

Cisco has developed a broad and popular portfolio of network products. Recently, the company has been extending its reach into new markets, such as energy management and camcorders. Possibly because of these moves, the vendor has fared fairly well during the recent downturn: generating $40 billion in fiscal 2010, an 11% increase from 2009.

As companies become larger and more diversified, it can be difficult for them to continue to serve their traditional customers. Cisco has been a popular choice among small and medium businesses. The bulk of this announcement centered on large enterprises (another Cisco strong point) rather than small and medium businesses. The vendor has tried to maintain its momentum in the wireless market with the Aironet 1040 Series Access Point. In this space, Cisco faces competition from companies like Aruba, Hewlett-Packard, Meru, and Xirrus. Time will tell whether its recent expanding focus will enable it to continue to serve that space.

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