Australian-based company Scitec has signed a technology agreement with Cisco that will see it incorporate Cisco's Internetwork Operating System technology into its FastLane Packet Switch.
Scitec says the net effect will be to give users a single unit that will handle LAN, telephone, facsimile and video traffic across a WAN. The reduction in the number of leased lines and telecommunications services required is expected to give end users significantly lower telecommunications charges.
The question for resellers is, are they selling a voice/ data compression unit or a router? The answer is both.
"We expect to see a significantly lower cost for the combined unit compared with the prices for a typical mid-range Cisco router plus a Scitec FastLane voice/data integration unit," said Paul Magee, managing director of Scitec.
The agreement between the two companies will allow Scitec to effectively piggyback a Cisco router onto its voice/data switch. It will also allow Scitec's FastLane switches to coexist on a Cisco network as if they were Cisco routers.
Peter Jones, Scitec's general manager for technology, said the company wanted to integrate a conventional router as a plug-in option for its FastLane Switch.
"Looking at the available technology it was obvious that Cisco, as the leading supplier of routers, was the company we should be talking to," he said. Negotiations took place over a very short timeframe and the agreements were reached in just a few months.
For resellers, it will mean looking at each new networking customer in the light of voice requirements as well as data.
However, Scitec does not expect to start volume shipments of its IOS-enabled voice/data switches before June 1997.