Networking distributor LAN Systems is talking up the benefits of content-aware smart switches, having recently negotiated distribution rights for the Alteon Web Systems products in Australia and New Zealand.
LAN Systems general manager Nick Verykios describes smart Web switching as the "next big wave" to hit the networking hardware market.
"Web switches play an important role in all e-commerce transactions. Consider how many online shopping baskets are dropped by Web servers before people get to commit with their credit cards," Verykios said.
Web content-aware switches are designed to address Web site problems such as denial of service and non- availability by penetrating deep into the messages and organising them according to a predetermined order of importance.
The switches read what is being requested, who is requesting it, the location of the best server for that information and the number of replica sites available.
"We have identified a big push into the whole content-aware Web switching area," Verykios told ARN. "We recognise that the technology is very complex, resellers need to source the components from a variety of vendors because no single vendor has the solution end to end."
In order to capture the smart switch market, LAN Systems is offering to fill much of the integrator skills gap by providing integration services which can be branded according to the reseller's wants.
"We are trying to help integrators capture this emerging market through technical support that allows us to fully proof a system, then provide it to the end user through the channel," Verykios said.
He told ARN that while the market is clearly focused toward the high- end enterprise sector of the market, it is important that integrators do not limit themselves to too narrow a market.
"Obviously content-aware Web sites are principally aimed at the corporate enterprise arena however, there are also a series of support companies that are involved in the market. Any service provider type of company that actually supports the corporate market should be looking seriously at providing the efficiencies that smart switching offers," he said.
Verykios particularly singled out ASPs and telcos as an important and, as yet, untapped market for the smart switching devices.