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March 11, 2010

Cisco's Routing System Could Be Revolutionary, Seriously: Expert

By Michael Dinan, TMCnet Editor

Though it’s received wide criticism from many technology companies and media outlets, IT bellwether Cisco (News - Alert) Systems Inc. still may be revolutionizing the Internet in its own unique way with its announcement this week of a robust next-gen router, an industry insider told TMCnet today.
According to Bob McCandless, CEO of BrightCom – a Huntington Beach, Calif.-based maker of video, data, and telepresence products – the carrier and wholesale cost-savings projected for the Cisco CRS-3 Carrier Routing System could change the face of IP communications if they’re passed down to consumers (individuals as well as businesses).
“Also, if that new bandwidth is available, with 300 percent more speed, then for a backbone provider, core costs should go down for access to bandwidth, which in theory would be passed on to customers,” McCandless told TMCnet.
Cisco teased out its announcement by saying it would significantly change the Internet. In particular, company officials said, the routing system is expected to serve as the foundation for the Web in a world where cloud computing and mobile video both dominate. The $90,000 system is set to launch in the third quarter.
As Pankaj Patel (News - Alert), senior vice president and general manager of Cisco’s Service Provider Business said in a briefing during the CRS-3’s unveiling: “The next generation Internet is upon us and we are confident that the Cisco CRS-3 will play a crucial role as service providers like AT&T (News - Alert) deliver an exciting, new array of video, mobile, data center and cloud services. The Cisco CRS-3 is well positioned to carry on the tradition of the Cisco CRS-1, become the flagship router of the future and serves as the foundation for the world’s most intelligent and advanced broadband networks.”
Not everyone took kindly to the announcement.
Juniper Networks (News - Alert) reportedly questioned the legitimacy of Cisco’s claims of “revolutionizing.” Others clearly were disappointed with the hype, and that emotional roller-coaster played out on the stock market as well.
McCandless said he thought the announcement certainly was over-hyped, but that as someone who is involved in telepresence and data conferencing, the CRS-3’s introduction could mark a watershed moment for IT.
“If I’m Verizon, today, and I’m selling FiOS (News - Alert) and my wholesale costs for bandwidth are X, and this new router cuts costs by two-thirds by increasing supply, then I can pass that savings on to customers,” McCandless said. “Going down from $45 or $60 per month to $15 or $20 could be huge. If that happens, then that could power a new change where everything is done through a single IP connection.”

Michael Dinan is a group managing editor for TMCnet, overseeing TMCnet's Web editorial team and covering news in the IP communications, CRM and VoIP industries. He also oversees production of e-Newsletters in the areas of 4G wireless technology and smart products. To read more of Michael's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Michael Dinan

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