Intel has rolled out a new line of switches, announced a device that will add intelligence to networks and delivered an update on its Internet Exchange Architecture (IXA) at its developers' forum in California this week.
In his keynote speech, Mark Christensen, vice president and general manager for Intel's Network Communication Group, said IXA has moved from a vision to a reality in less than a year.
He said IXA represents a shift in networking from application specific integrated circuits to a standard backbone. "There are multiple aspects of IXA which include hardware and software building blocks that are complemented by third-party developers. It's a journey and we are filling in the gaps," he said, adding that Intel has made 10 acquisitions in this area including that of Trillium in July.
Christensen also unveiled a new class of switch, known as Intel Media Switches, which will provide a complete product from silicon to software. The software will include driver application protocol interfaces and royalty-free licensing of source code for application programming interfaces.
The devices will help equipment manufacturers build multi-service capabilities over ethernet networks and enable voice and video integration over IP networks.
The company also unveiled a device called GigaBlade OC-48 that will add intelligence and provide visibility into optical networks for the purpose of billing. "It allows IA servers to go right into the optical network," said Christensen.
He pointed out that the challenges in deploying services like streaming rental movies will be "adding intelligence on top of the communication network", and called on Narus, an internet business infrastructure solutions company, to demonstrate a wire-speed software application to analyse a streaming video movie feed.
Narus' Optical Analyzer connects to the optical network using GigaBlade and then collects application and service level data per user, per transaction. If a service provider wants to bill customers based on network usage, Analyzer collects and processes that information which is then fed into a third-party application.
With the GigaBlade-enabled software, users can analyse and more accurately bill web transactions, said Christensen. "At the end of the day, it's all about billing."
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