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The Ethernet Switch market explodes and Cisco wins

Before it disappeared into Oracle, Sun’s motto was “The network is the computer.” They didn’t know the half of it. According to IDC’s latest worldwide router market report, the worldwide Ethernet switch market reached record revenues of $5.9 billion in the third quarter of 2011. In particular, the 3Q11 results showed exceptional Ethernet switch market performance in the Asia/Pacific region, which increased 27.8% year over year and now accounts for 25.8% of worldwide revenue. Can you say explosive growth? I knew you could.

We’re used to think of North America and Europe as being the center of the Internet, but in a statement, Rohit Mehra, IDC’s director of Enterprise Communications Infrastructure said, “After a weaker than expected first half of 2011, the Ethernet switch market rebounded strongly this quarter largely on the basis of healthy demand in the Asia/Pacific region. China experienced remarkable 44.1% year-over-year growth this quarter, but other countries in the region also showed exceptional growth. Australia, Korea, and India, for example, all ended the quarter with 27-30% annual gains, further reaffirming the continued relevance of network infrastructure within enterprise IT.”

In particular, 10Gibabit Ethernet (10GbE) growth has exploded. Since its standardization in 2002 10GbE has been becoming the high-speed interconnect of choice for Internet backbones and metropolitan and wide area networks (MANs and WANs). IDG’s numbers show this with 10GbE switch revenue having increased 29.9% year over year and 99.0% in port shipments due to continued adoption in datacenters and campus core deployments. 10GbE port shipments grew to a record 2.09 million ports in the quarter.

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