To tap this midmarket opportunity, Ginevan says, consumer, SOHO, and small business vendors have been trying to upgrade their networking offerings with additional features. But Cisco is taking the opposite approach, by trying to scaled down its "pricey enterprise-class products" to make them affordable to smaller companies.
Network Computing tested a $7,888 system, and happily reports that "all elements of the SBCS performed at the level of quality we've come to expect from Cisco's enterprise products."
On the other hand, "while it's easy to get a basic system up and running, the amount of customization available within the SBCS will be overwhelming for some SMB network admins," Ginevan says. So many smaller companies will probably call upon VARs for help installing and managing the SBCS.