Cisco Pushes Big Features in Little Products
eLABorations: Enterprise heavy-hitter ups the ante in a new arenaSOHO products.Cisco Systems Inc. announced a raft of security related products and software enhancements on Nov. 19 that are good news for IT managers. Continuing a trend weve seen over the past year, the company is pushing big-time features from its high end routers into devices that sit much closer to telecommuters and workers in branch offices. Starting this month, the companys IOS (Internet Operating System) will start showing up in the Cisco 800 series and SOHO 90 series secure broadband routers. Aggressive pricing makes these little beauties roughly competitive with other low-end offerings in the branch office arena. The Cisco products crucial difference from other vendors devices is that the Cisco wares support QoS functions along with management features that give corporate IT managers much greater control over the configuration and customization of these devices. eWEEK Labs will be getting the gear into the Labs to do a thorough test and will tell you if the features and functions, as shipped, match the hype. Almost regardless of the answer, though, this is an advance as far as IT managers are concerned. Performance-improving features and advanced management capabilities mean that IT managers will likely be able to improve staff and equipment productivity with only marginal increases in capital costs.
Cisco, of course, is hoping that the adoption of its SOHO products is going to increase the acceptance of the companys VoIP (voice over IP) telephone handsets and switching gear. The new devices should make it possible for IP handsets to more easily slip onto telecommuters and branch office workers desktops.