Redback touting low-end edge router

Redback Networks last week extended its edge-router portfolio with a low-end version designed for remote central offices and small points of presence.

The SmartEdge 100 Service Gateway is a two rack-unit form-factor multiservice broadband aggregation platform that combines carrier-class IP routing with subscriber-management capabilities. It is intended to enable the delivery of residential triple-play broadband services, including VoIP, real-time video and content delivery, and business Ethernet services, such as MPLS- and Virtual Private LAN Service-based VPNs.

SmartEdge 100 delivers up to 12Gbps of throughput with 8 million packet/sec of performance. It has two fixed Gigabit Ethernet ports that support copper or fiber connections and two FlexSlots that support modular, subscriber-facing Ethernet media interface cards (MIC).

The supported MICs are 12-port 100 FX or 10/100 TX Fast Ethernet interface cards.

The SmartEdge 100 addresses network segments, such as the access layer, where fewer subscribers and ports are required, Redback says. In addition to smaller POPS and remote central offices, the router is designed for new network deployments, such as wireless network aggregation and backhaul, and multitenant units, such as university dormitory, hospitality, healthcare and government organizations.

The SmartEdge 100 includes all of the modular operating system software and programmable hardware capabilities of the higher-end SmartEdge 400 and 800 models, Redback says. It performs subscriber management for as many as 8,000 simultaneous subscribers, with traffic management, eight queues of Hierarchical Quality of Service per subscriber, 16,000 virtual LANs (VLAN) and multicast.

Analysts say it will allow service providers to extend subscriber management and service routing closer to the user without having to construct a separate Ethernet aggregation layer to keep the costs of increasing subscriber density in check. Specifically, the SmartEdge 100 will go up against other fixed-configuration, low-density devices, such as Cisco's ME 6500 and 3400, Alcatel's 7250 service aggregation system and Riverstone's 15100 and 15200 aggregation routers.

Redback has experienced some recent success in carrier edge routing. It has a significant contract with BellSouth for that carrier's next-generation broadband buildout, and sales grew 36% in the fourth quarter of 2005, according to Dell'Oro Group. Its revenue market share almost doubled in 2005, from 3.6% to 6.4%, according to Dell'Oro.

SmartEdge 100 is scheduled to ship in the second quarter. Pricing was not disclosed.


Copyright © 2006 IDG Communications, Inc.

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