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Published September 21, 2010
Volume 18, Number 9


Trapeze Networks Takes Enterprise-Class Wi-Fi to New Levels  
Innovative New Products Feature Ideas Implemented by Pleasanton Engineering Teams


The hardware and software engineering staff at the Hacienda 
headquarters of Trapeze Networks.


By Nicole Zaro Stahl
NETWORK Editor


In the span of less than 10 years, Wi-Fi—wireless connectivity to a local area network--has exploded into an indispensable tool for computer users, whether at home or in the office. In the business arena WiFi has become even more ubiquitous, fully embedded in work flows everywhere, from the factory floor to the emergency room. Especially in environments like healthcare and education, a wireless network can be called upon to provide access to essential information for thousands of people at any single point in time.

Given how critical these applications can be to day-to-day operations, reliability and management functions have become paramount in the deployment of an enterprise-wide wireless network. Hacienda’s Trapeze Networks, a leader in enterprise wireless LAN equipment and management software, has understood these prerequisites since its inception, and has been regularly enhancing its technology to accommodate the expanding scale of users while meeting increasingly rigorous reliability criteria. 

In July the company introduced a new generation of enterprise-class wireless network products designed to the industry’s blazing fast 802.11n standards of 600 Mbps (Million Bits Per Second): the scalable WLAN (Wireless Local Area Network) hardware controller platform MX-800R; Mobility Point 522 and 522 E, affordable indoor and outdoor wireless access points; and the Wi-Fi management platform RingMaster 7.4.

“With these products we’ve taken the reliability and manageability of wireless networks to a whole new level,” comments Bart Tillmans, Trapeze Networks Vice President of Worldwide Marketing. For example, the controller unit is now more compact and boasts new features like hardware-based traffic security encapsulation, dual power supplies, and enhanced failover capabilities—“all invented and thought out here in Pleasanton,” Tillmans remarks.  

What makes this next-generation technology particularly attractive is its affordability, he points out. “It’s great to introduce new products, but there is only a narrow segment of the market willing to pay more for something new,” Tillmans observes. “We’re offering higher speeds at the lowest possible price point, which is really helpful for our customers and prospects in the current economy.” 

Founded in 2002, Trapeze Networks rolled out its first generation of products in April 2003 during the business technology tradeshow Interop Las Vegas. Each successive year has seen “new and more innovative wireless network products,” according to Tillmans. The company was acquired by St. Louis, Mo.-based Belden, a global leader in signal transmission products and solutions, in June 2008. The highly regarded Belden, one of the largest U.S.-based manufacturers of high-speed electronic cables, deemed Trapeze Networks an excellent fit with its focus on connectivity growth markets like enterprise and industrial networking.

Tillmans notes that the enterprise networking segment of the overall wireless market is “particularly busy,” projected to grow between 15 and 20 percent in 2010 and onward. While Trapeze sells “a significant portion” of its products domestically, the Belden affiliation has dramatically expanded its international business opportunities.

“There’s a clear trend that more and more organizations outside the traditional early adopter markets like healthcare and education are professionally unwiring their workforce,” he reports. “Innovative products like Apple’s iPad and Wi-Fi-enabled SmartPhones contribute to that trend. This will almost double the market for the WLAN solutions and products that Trapeze Networks manufactures.”

For more information, visit www.trapezenetworks.com.

 

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