Extreme claim for seamless networking space

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US networking vendor Extreme Networks seeks Australian resellers for a switch it claims will help plug the security hole between wired and wireless networks.

Charlie Cote, country manager for Extreme Networks in Australia and New Zealand, said the company's hybrid Summit 300-48 Ethernet and WLAN switch was the only unified wired and wireless switch available. The Summit 300-48 'intelligent' layer 3 switch was released to the Australian market in October.

'It's quite unique in that it's the first 48 port Ethernet switch that can provide power over Ethernet to any stand-alone, standards-based on line telephone,' he claimed. 'I don't [think] there's any other product out there that has all that shipping today.'

Cote said Extreme Networks -- which had been operating in Australia since 1998 -- had signed 15 to 25 partners across Australia but sought more. The company has distributor Ingram Micro, integrators Matrix CNI and Commander and vendors such as Avaya on its books, he said.

'We have installed it with a few customers already,' he said. 'And we signed them in the last two months -- we see a lot of exciting opportunities with Avaya.'

The Summit 300-48 -- which could 'add value' in companies with 15 to 500 staff -- was an important part of Extreme Networks' arsenal against its main rival, networking giant Cisco Systems, he said. 'We see Cisco in nine out of ten or our deals -- they are a formidable competitor.

I know that they are actually talking about a new product that should be coming out shortly ... [but] today they do not have a solution like ours -- they have two solutions whereas ours is completely integrated,' Cote said.

Extreme Networks' switch is part of the company's Unified Access architecture range for wired and wireless networks, which also includes the 802.11a, b and g-compatible Altitude 300 wireless port. The IEEE 802.3af-standard port enables all network operations to be performed on the Summit 300-48.

Cote said Unified Access architecture allowed enterprises to deploy a single network for both wired and wireless network access, instead of operating two separate or parallel networks. The architecture enabled organisations to extend their networks across wireless, LAN telephony and devices such as PDAs.

'We work in the services provider market. That switch could fit a managed service solution and in the health vertical, where they have high security and high availability needs, and in government. It's already installed in financial services businesses,' Cote said.

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