Nokia debuts fastest routers on market, targeting web giants

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Nokia (NOKIA.HE) launched the world's fastest network chips on Wednesday, breaking into the Juniper (JNPR.N) and Cisco (CSCO.O) dominated core router market and giving its existing network business a boost.

Nokia said a suite of new IP technology launches has been created to prepare businesses and operators for a complete rethink of how their internet infrastructure is set up. They are also backward compatible with older products.

"With this announcement, Nokia will have the highest-performance system capacity in the market, and a lot of those web-scalers, they just want speed", Ray Mota, principal analyst, ACG Research, said in an interview with Reuters. The networking chipset has a 2.4 Tb/s network processor.

The FP4 silicon is being touted as a breakthrough networking chipset, as it features the world's first 2.4 Tbps network processor - up to 6x more powerful than processors now available.

Nokia is now No.2 to Cisco in the router market having taken over the second place slot from Juniper. The new chipsets are set to ship in the fourth quarter, with routers running FP4 chips ready in the first quarter of next year.

Nokia is facing flat capital spending among its telecom customer base, leading it to pursue more business from web-scale players, which have doubled their capital spending on network equipment over the past four years, Mota said.

Nokia is introducing the 7950 petabit-class router aimed at the core routing market to help it win business from customers such as Apple and Facebook. A petabit is capable of transmitting 5,000 two-hour-long high-definition videos every second.

"The new Nokia platforms are the industry's first capable of delivering terabit IP flows, a 10x improvement over the existing 100 Gbps links used to construct the internet backbone", the firm said.

BT (BT.L) managing director and chief network architect Neil McRae said the British telecoms operator, an early customer of Nokia's new products, is already running thousands of 7750 edge routers and hundreds of 7950 systems in its core network. A terabit can transfer a high-definition Netflix TV episode in one second.

The new chips, built on Nokia's own FP4 silicon, are able to keep up with high processing volume needed for virtual reality programming and next generation mobile 5G connectivity, while enabling service providers and large webscale operators to build networks with enhanced security features.