Network hardware company Avaya has launched a line of Ethernet switches that are targeted at small offices or environments such as hospitality suites.
The products, known as the Avaya Ethernet Routing Switch (ERS) 3500 series, are priced ranging from $695 to $2,395 depending on the model and features.
The hallmark of the new switches is the ease with which they can be installed, according to Avaya. Set-up is automated using Avaya IP Office, which helps small companies configure and install IP phones in a matter of minutes, Avaya said. The switches can be managed via a Web browser interface.
The switches come in Fast and Gigabit Ethernet versions, in 10- and 24-port configurations. The technology comes with a Power over Ethernet option, which helps power advanced IP phones, wireless access points or video surveillance cameras. Some of them are fanless, for businesses where quiet operation is a consideration, Avaya said.
One bit advantage of the new switches is the fact that they can be managed remotely, according to Wilson Chan, manager of information systems for the Durham District School Board.
In the press materials for the new products, Chan said:
"Durham District School Board has over 300 portable classrooms in 134 elementary and secondary schools across the region. Most are wired for network access using an 8-port unmanaged switch, so technicians have to drive out to schools each and every time an issue arises. The Avaya ERS 3500 will change all that. I can be managed remotely, making it infinitely easier to configure and troubleshoot, and providing insight into the traffic on the switch."
I can envision how this capability might help small businesses that have limited control over their own office real estate and that need an option that can be installed quickly in environments that weren't necessarily built with technology in mind.
(Photo courtesy of Avaya)