After several years of poor sales, manufacturers of network processors are finally seeing revenues rise as telecoms equipment makers start incorporating network chips into their products, newly published research has revealed.
The study by market research firm Heavy Reading found that, although first-generation network processors hit the market five years ago, the collapse of the telecoms investment bubble kept equipment makers from developing products to take advantage of the technology.
"Unit sales of network processors began to grow in 2003, leading to significant recovery in 2004," said report author Simon Stanley, a Heavy Reading analyst, who estimated that network processors generated $150m in revenue last year representing a 150 per cent increase over 2003.
According to the study, network processing units (NPUs) are now a mainstream technology, as the world's largest telecoms equipment vendors have begun using network processors for applications from the edge to the core of the network.
These manufacturers include Alcatel, Cisco Systems, Huawei Technologies, Lucent Technologies, Siemens and Samsung.
The report concluded that carrier access is the key market for NPU suppliers in 2005 with demand highest in the access network. Components vendors are now developing fast-path NPUs and integrated communications processors to address this market.
10-Gbit/s NPUs are now shipping in volume, the study noted, with five components vendors in commercial production: AMCC, Bay Microsystems, EZchip, Intel and Sandburst.
Cotton seedling freezes to death as Chang'e-4 shuts down for the Moon's 14-day lunar night
Fortnite easily out-earns PUBG, Assassin's Creed Odyssey and Red Dead Redemption 2 in 2018
Meteor showers as a service will be visible for about 100 kilometres in all directions
Saturn's rings only formed in the past 100 million years, suggests analysis of Cassini space probe data
New findings contradict conventional belief that Saturn's rings were formed along with the planet about 4.5 billion years ago