CES 2009 - NETGEAR underlines service provider business

LAS VEGAS - Networking manufacturer NETGEAR is doing more than Big Box sales these days, having moved 3 million white label devices through service providers in 2008. This morning, the company announced a new set of routers specifically designed for broadband providers.

Netgear's overnight growth in the CPE (customer premise equipment) market is likely to generate interesting discussions at Linksys/Cisco and many of the old-line telecommunications equipment manufacturers.

The new set of home gateways includes Netgear offerings for DSL, cable, fiber and wireless networks. Netgear is emphasizing QoS for VoIP and video delivery, and multiple service features in these offerings. The company offers service providers customization services, including pre-configured firmware loads, to provide a plug-and-play experience for both the consumer and the broadband provider.

Perhaps the most interesting feature out of the grocery bag of announcements today is the ability to bond multiple ADSL lines using two or more gateways in order to deliver the aggregated capacity of all the lines connected. Service providers with a vested interest in last-mile DSL, such as AT&T and various overseas markets, will need this feature in order to compete against DOCSIS 3.0 deployments.

Speaking of the cable crowd, the CGD34NT supports DOCSIS 3.0 and includes 801.11n WiFi, QoS and GigE; there's also a version available for EuroDOCSYS 3.0.

Two families of ADSL2+ voice and data gateways incorporate support for 802.11g and QoS for voice-over-broadband. The entry-level DVG631G family is targeted at "emerging markets," while the DVG834G family is for ISPs and telcos that are either serving multiple computer households, or are retiring legacy analog switching platforms.

Netgear's high-end Wireless-N MoCA router incorporates 270 Mbps speeds on the 802.11n wireless standard, including embedded QoS and low-latency for high-quality streaming IP Video.  An adopter kit converts Coax to Ethernet so home cable TV plant can turn into Fast Ethernets for HD video streaming.

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