Caspian Rolls Out Router

Caspian Networks has unveiled a new router for telecom carriers and a “trade-up” program to lure customers.

It’s the second time this week that a well-funded, privately held firm has challenged Cisco, Juniper and other heavy-hitters with a new product.

Yesterday, Procket Networks introduced its first product after years of research and development. A Caspian spokesman said the company considers Cisco and Juniper its main competition, but allowed that Procket could also be a rival.

Caspian’s Apeiro (Greek for “infinity,” pronounced “a-peer-o”) flow-based router directs network traffic and helps users consolidate different networks on an Internet protocol backbone.

“This impressive new design is a highly automated — and therefore extremely cost-effective — way to support services such as voice over IP,” said Scott Bradner, a technical consultant at Harvard.

The product can be configured to accommodate core traffic from 10 Gbps of data flowing in two directions to multiple terabits. Apeiro works with industry standards such as BGP, IS-IS and MPLS.

Pricing starts at $110,000 and can run over $1 million depending on configuration, a Caspian spokesman told

The company also said it would give customers credit toward the purchase of Aperio if they traded in their current gear.

“We want service providers to know we’re serious about lowering barriers to adopting Caspian’s Apeiro flow-based router,” said John Pirillo, a Caspian vice president.

The amount of credit will vary depending on the purchase price of the original equipment, the length of time it has been used and the volume of Caspian equipment committed to.

Caspian is led by Bill Krause, who was recently CEO and president of Internet outsourcing firm Exodus Communications. He is best known for his tenure as president and CEO of 3Com during the 1980s.

The firm was founded in 1999 and has 270 employees in San Jose, Minneapolis, Minn., and Research Triangle Park, N.C.

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