With less than a year to digest their acquisition of Dune Networks and their switching fabric technology Broadcom has announced that they are sampling their BCM88600 silicon which is designed to enable Ethernet switching solutions that scale in performance to the 100 Tbps range.
The new device is a single-chip implementation of what would normally be found, in terms of features can capabilities, of an entire high-end line card. This will allow customers to build ultra-high performance systems that can easily support the current evolution from 1 GbE to 10GbE and the upcoming 40Gbe/100GbE technologies.
Bandwidth demands will continue to grow for the foreseeable future, as bandwidth intensive technologies such as streaming multimedia continue to grow. As more media-rich production environments become the norm, rather than the exception, the need to deliver this level of bandwidth will become a necessity.
Vendors will vie to deliver the most content rich web experiences; when you couple that with cloud services being delivered to the enterprise and users, especially as the delivery of bandwidth intensive services becomes a common part of the cloud experience, the apparently huge amounts of bandwidth available in even 40GbE and 100GbE datacenter network environments will seem limiting.
With the potential to scale to 100 Tbps, these new chips from Broadcom may really offer some future proofing for the vendors that choose to implement them.