Network equipment energy efficiency key to competitive edge

Power consumption and other so-called ‘green issues’ are fast becoming the information technology industry's biggest challenge.

Network equipment vendors who address the issues of energy efficiency earliest will have significant opportunities to develop competitive advantage in their respective markets, according to a new report by In-Stat .

The market research believes that power consumption and green issues in general are fast becoming the information technology industry's biggest challenge.

It regards it as inevitable that as power consumption concerns grow, the spotlight will fall on LAN switches which have the unenviable reputation for being among the most power-hungry of all types of IT equipment.

In its report, In-Stat suggests that switch vendors who address energy efficiency earliest will be best placed to take full advantage of what it predicts will be continuing growth in the switch market. What complicates matters is that even among similarly equipped switches, capable of performing identical tasks, there are significant vendor-specific differences in energy efficiency.

"As many businesses develop green initiatives using best practices published by organisations like the Green Grid, IT managers will be forced to absorb some degree of responsibility for their organisation's power usage," predicted  In-Stat analyst Victoria Fodale. "The role of energy efficiency will grow considerably in importance for future equipment purchases."

In-Stat research also found that shipments of power over Ethernet ports, which can consume more than 10 times the energy of standard ports, have tripled since 2005.

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