‘Wedge’ Network Switch To Be Available For Sale From Facebook Inc (FB)
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB), which designed a network switch for its own data centers, will soon make it available for sale. The network switch will be made by Taiwan-based Accton Technologies. The switch was built under the Open Compute Project, and was set up about four years back by the social networking site. The company designed it as a path for operators of data centers to integrate new hardware designs and allow them to be produced at low-cost.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s objective in making the design was to provide the device at a cheaper cost and more standardized hardware, compared to what is being supplied by vendors like Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ), Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) and Dell. The social networking site is already using the Wedge network switch in its data centers. The same switch would now be available to others during the first half to be supplied by Accton Technologies and its OEM partners.
As far as the software is concerned, Big Switch Networks and Cumulus Networks will offer them. On top of this, Facebook has placed some of its network software on Github, for those who want to have their own.
Significantly, Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) will not be making any revenue out of the Wedge switch. Therefore, it ruled out the question of entering into the hardware business. Its intention was to provide an open source model for hardware to be improved by other OCP members.
The company indicated that one of the objectives of OCP was to do away with ‘gratuitous differentiation,’ add-on features from vendors which may not be needed for all customers. It said that the alterations have not only made products more expensive, but could also make them more complex for administration purposes.
Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) could conserve as much as $2 billion in the last three years due to OCP designs. Though the company could not give the breakdown of the figures, Facebook said that its savings were from capital costs in its infrastructure.
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