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Cisco Retools Its Router Line

Since its inception 25 years ago, Cisco has been synonymous with routing. The company rolled out its most significant router upgrade, Integrated Services Router Generation (ISRG 2) since 2004 and focused on enhanced video transmission capabilities, more virtualized services, and reduced energy consumption as the means to maintain its market position.Cisco is the industrys leading routing vendor but has been losing market share to more focused competitors, such as Juniper Networks, and lower priced options. At one time, Cisco accounted for two out of every three router sales, but now the companys market share is below 60%. The new routers are designed to rebuff those incursions by delivering features that can handle the Internets changing traffic profile.

Video is one area where changes are occurring. The ISRG 2 line comes with new video digital signal processors designed to speed up delivery of video content. In addition, virtualization has taken hold in the data center and is now making its mark with network equipment. Ciscos new routers decouple hardware and software functions, so changes can be implemented in an automated manner rather than requiring manual intervention. Also, the devices come with CissoEnergyWise energy management software, which is designed to help companies cut their energy usage.

These features are available on three router lines. The Cisco 1900 Series Integrated Services Router is a compact desktop device; the Cisco 2900 Series Integrated Services Router is designed as a midrange system, and the Cisco 3900 Series is tailored to the needs of large companies. Pricing for the routers starts at $1,595 at the low end and begins at $9,500 with the high end routers.

Cisco has been a primary router supplier to many small and medium businesses. The companys enhancements hit upon a number of the key customer concerns and demonstrate that the firm would like to maintain it preeminent position in the router market.