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Bay still on high-speed track

The networker will take the next steps in support of gigabit-speed Ethernet technology by tackling new segments and updating its offerings.

    Despite a tepid embrace of Bay Networks' initial efforts into new high-speed markets, the company will roll out plans to continue targeting networking equipment for this sector at the upcoming Networld+Interop trade show in Las Vegas and beyond.

    The company, fresh off the announcement of poor earnings for the quarter, will seek to take the next steps in support of gigabit-speed Ethernet technology by tackling new segments and updating existing offerings, according to sources.

    Among the items on the table See related story: 
Bay misses revised estimates at the networking industry's largest annual gathering will be a new Accelar workgroup switch 1050 that will be targeted at departmental needs, sources said. Along with the new box, Bay will announce support for a variety of software features, such as advanced routing extensions and IP multicast technology across the Accelar line, they added.

    Later this year, Bay also plans to add gigabit-speed links to its BCN line of routing devices and System 5000 "all-in-one"-style back-end system.

    A Bay spokeswoman refused to comment on upcoming announcements.

    The rollouts come as executives from Bay admit that initial adoption of Accelar products has not been up to expectations so far, leading in part to a downturn in the company's financial fortunes. With finalization of a standard for Gigabit Ethernet on its way, however, analysts remain bullish on the prospects for the market.

    Gigabit Ethernet offers higher speeds for what is the dominant technology for connecting PCs to servers on a network. With the advent of this technology, the company will be able to move beyond current market niches to tackle high-end networking needs, according to most industry pundits.

    On the ATM (asynchronous transfer mode) side of Bay's business, the firm will add higher densities to the Centillion line of equipment and incorporate a new multiprotocol routing "engine" for the System 5000 BH, a model that includes Centillion technology.

    Separately, the firm will formally announce a new gateway on Monday that provides an IP (Internet protocol)-based bridge between voice and data networks. The new Voice Gateway 4000, which was disclosed to CNET's NEWS.COM earlier this month, hopes to take advantage of current interest in voice-over-IP technology.

    The new gateway takes advantage of software technology Bay gained from an equity investment in NetSpeak. It will ship immediately with prices starting at $1,500 per port. Density for the gateway starts at 24 ports and extends to 96 ports.

    The 4000 represents Bay's first product in the voice-over-IP market. The company's 5399 remote access concentrator will also soon add voice as well as fax-over-IP capabilities.