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Cisco releases new high-capacity Internet router

The networking giant announces two new products that aim at delivering high-speed Internet access to businesses of all sizes.

Cisco Systems today announced two new networking products aimed at delivering high-speed Internet access to businesses of all sizes.

Cisco today began shipping a new, higher-capacity router that telecommunications carriers and Internet service providers can use to offer businesses T1 connections, high-speed Net access typically used by companies.

Later this month, the networking giant will release a new router targeted at giving digital subscriber line (DSL) Internet access to small businesses and telecommuters. A router is a piece of hardware that ships Internet traffic from point to point on a network at high speeds.

With the new products, Cisco is attempting to better compete against rivals Ericsson and Siemens in the corporate arena and 3Com and Nortel Networks' NetGear in the small business market.

Cisco's new router is aimed at helping service providers build faster networks in the area where service providers connect businesses to the Internet. It collects the traffic from businesses and shuttles the data across the Net. The product, called the Cisco 10000 Edge Services Router, is Cisco's first product aimed solely at giving businesses T1 connections, said Dale Jantzen, a Cisco marketing director.

Previously released Cisco routers--called the 7200 and 7500--were more general purpose, aimed not only at T1 connections, but also cable, DSL, wireless and dial-up Internet access, he said.

Analyst Jeremy Duke, of market research firm Synergy Research Group, said the new product will allow Cisco to better compete against Ericsson and Siemens, who also have products dedicated to T1 connections.

With the new Cisco 10000 router, the company can sell a product that is solely aimed at T1 connections, rather than try to sell a Cisco 7000 router that does everything, Duke said.

"It's almost like buying a Ferrari for a trip to the grocery store, when you can do it with a Volkswagen Bug," he said. "You have to be price competitive and the 7000 products were high-end in cost."

Cisco's Jantzen said the new product runs on a fast and programmable network processor that Cisco developed internally. It provides service providers with new features, such as security and Internet telephony.

Cisco later this month will release its DSL router targeted at service providers who want to provide DSL service to small businesses and telecommuters. The DSL router--called Cisco 827 ADSL Router--supports up to 20 computer users, and allows them to share a single Internet connection. The product will offer computer users security and the ability to make phone calls and hold videoconferences over the Net.