PoE powers Ethernet switch revenues

Dell'Oro Group reports on Power over Ethernet

The market for Ethernet switches swelled to a record $4.8 billion in the third quarter of this year, with Power-over-Ethernet ports accounting to a startling percentage of shipments, the Dell'Oro Group recently revealed.

The appeal of Power over Ethernet is pretty clear. With PoE, you deliver power and Ethernet data signal over the same cable, something that comes in handy for VoIP phones or wireless LAN access points placed in awkward locations.

That PoE ports now account for 20% of all Ethernet switch port shipments worldwide, however, is pretty amazing. Gigabit Ethernet PoE port shipments increased almost 80%, compared to the same quarter last year, Dell'Oro says. I doubt all those ports are being used for phones - which would mean that in many cases, customers are buying the capability just to have it, in case they ever need PoE on those ports.

Dell'Oro notes that the price premium for Gigabit PoE has declined, and that Cisco and Nortel - the leaders in sales of IP phones - both contributed to the record PoE shipments. The research firm says the overall market has seen 17 straight quarters of year-over-year growth.

In related news, Dell'Oro said that the market for service provider routers also hit a record level in the third quarter, at $2 billion. Cisco and Juniper both collected record revenues from service provider routers. They are the number one and two market leaders, respectively, both growing this business at more than 30% year-over-year.

Plus, the worldwide IP telephony carrier market reached $1 billion in quarterly revenues for the first time in the third quarter.

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