Broadcom Rolls Out Fast Ethernet Switch with Enterprise Features

7/15/2003 - Broadcom Corporation (Nasdaq: BRCM), the leading provider of silicon solutions enabling broadband communications, announced the Broadcom® BCM5338M, the industry's first highly integrated, scalable Fast Ethernet switch with enterprise features that includes a software management suite for remote-office/branch-office (ROBO) and small-to-medium business (SMB) environments. Built upon five generations of industry-leading ROBOswitchTM technology, the BCM5338M provides a new level of intelligence within affordable Fast Ethernet switches by incorporating high-level enterprise networking features such as network security and Quality of Service (QoS) for Voice over IP (VoIP) and multimedia applications.

In the past, SMB switch equipment offered a limited set of functionality that was not suitable for the increasing feature requirements of ROBO and small-to-medium businesses. Today's SMB network infrastructure requires equipment that can deliver higher performance and better manageability of diversified enterprise applications such as VoIP, virtual private networks (VPNs) and streaming audio and video, without having to use costly and intensive internal resources for configuration and maintenance. With the BCM5338M family of switches, equipment manufacturers can produce intelligent networking equipment that can efficiently deliver enhanced key Layer 2+ switching features for SMB environments without the traditional cost and management burden.

A key element of the BCM5338M is the inclusion of a software management suite enabling original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to rapidly deploy feature-rich ROBO/SMB products with minimal effort. In addition, customers have the ability to utilize this software as the foundation for differentiated products and a diverse range of new applications. This software package includes drivers and an application programming interface (API) and system development kit to accelerate the product development cycle for a Layer 2+ managed system and enable faster time-to-market.

"With the new highly integrated BCM5338M family of Fast Ethernet switches, we are defining a new category of smart devices that effectively deliver high-performance and low-cost solutions for advanced Layer 2+ management features," said Dr. Ford Tamer, Vice President and General Manager of Broadcom's Enterprise Networking Business Unit. "Broadcom realizes that small-to-medium-sized businesses require a solid infrastructure that can support the latest networking applications and can also be easily managed. Our sixth generation of the ROBOswitch family exemplifies our field-proven technology and excellent track record of addressing the needs in this marketplace."

The BCM5338M combines into a single switch-on-a-chip all of the functions of a standalone 9-port Fast Ethernet switch system, including the integration of memory, physical layer (PHY) transceivers, media access controllers (MACs), address management and a non-blocking switch fabric. In addition, the BCM5338M is designed with the unique and scalable ROBO expansion architecture which allows it to cascade to 16, 24, or 32 port Fast Ethernet systems through a 3.2 Gigabit per second (Gbps) expansion bus, making it well-suited to address high-density Fast Ethernet applications at a very low cost.

The BCM5338M also offers advanced system management features that provide security across the network through support of the 802.1x Extensive Authentication Protocol (EAPOL). This enables standards-based user authentication and allows secure mode access filtering over local area networks while providing the ability to operate in four different modes of access control, which is extended support beyond the 802.1x standard. The device supports 802.1p QoS packet classification, with four priority queues, that enables network traffic management for high-bandwidth applications such as VoIP and multimedia. It also offers the ability to program each port for traffic storm and rate control, providing better network utilization amongst users.

Technical Information
The BCM5338M features a 9-port managed switch that integrates eight full-duplex 10/100 Fast Ethernet transceivers, nine media access controllers, one port that can be assigned as a WAN port, built-in memory for packet buffer and control, and a non-blocking switch fabric that supports up to 24 ports. In addition to on-chip memory, the switch supports IEEE 802.1Q (VLAN), IEEE 802.1p (four priority queues), DiffServ, ToS, IEEE 802.1D (Spanning Tree), 802.1x protocols, IP multicast and IGMP snooping for video streaming applications.

The BCM5338M is built within a 208-pin PBGA package utilizing 0.18-micron digital CMOS process technology and yields a low power consumption of less than 2W. The device is also pin compatible with the previous generation BCM5328M series of switches. This allows customers to take advantage of an already established and massive installed base, accelerating design and deployment of products based on the new device.

Availability and Pricing
Samples of the BCM5338M are currently available to all customers with production quantities expected in Q3 of 2003. Pricing is available upon request.

About Broadcom
Broadcom Corporation is the leading provider of highly integrated silicon solutions that enable broadband communications and networking of voice, video and data services. Using proprietary technologies and advanced design methodologies, Broadcom designs, develops and supplies complete system-on-a-chip solutions and related hardware and software applications for every major broadband communications market. Our diverse product portfolio includes solutions for digital cable and satellite set-top boxes; cable and DSL modems and residential gateways; high-speed transmission and switching for local, metropolitan, wide area and storage networking; home and wireless networking; cellular and terrestrial wireless communications; Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) gateway and telephony systems; broadband network processors; and SystemI/OTM server solutions. These technologies and products support our core mission: Connecting everything®.

Broadcom is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and may be contacted at 1-949-450-8700 or at

Broadcom®, the pulse logo, Connecting everything®, ROBOswitchTM, and SystemI/OTM are trademarks of Broadcom Corporation and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries.

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