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Switch fabric market to shift infrastructure paradigm

Posted: 12 Aug 2002 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:switch fabric? iBAN? GigE switches? service provider core routers?

The switch fabric (SF) market is seen to have enormous growth potential and is slated to experience a healthy unit shipment CAGR of 141 percent from 2001 to 2006, according to In-Stat/MDR.

The market research firm reports that the SF market's potential lies in the fact that any given SF can be sold into many different target markets and as a result, even though early earning opportunities will be within the router and switch markets, significant opportunities will be available in at least 13 different target markets by 2006. Eric Mantion, a senior analyst with In-Stat, explains that although certain aspects of SFs have been around for a while, the protocol-independent fabrics that target high-end markets are just budding.

The forecasted increase in total SF shipments and revenues in 2005 will be a direct result of the iBAN market coming into its own, In-Stat said. While iBAN will not even be a potential market for switch fabrics until 2003, this segment is predicted to be its number one target market by 2005. Further, although high-end GbE switches initially appear to be a strong market, by 2006 the other three main markets are seen to be iBAN, 10GbE switches, and service provider core routers.

In-Stat believes that the most successful SF vendors will not only have fabrics with good technical merits, but also present their customers with a holistic solution in which the fabric is blended seamlessly with the other high-intelligence networking silicon. As infrastructure equipment continues to get more complicated, the individual aspects of chips become less important when compared to the completeness of the whole solution.

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