Compiled by Brian Milligan
The Siemon Company (www.siemon.com) and Holocom Networks (www.holocomnetworks.com) have formed an alliance to co-market a solution designed to bring network intelligence closer to the desktop.
The venture, called Extensis, joins Siemon's technology in copper and optical-fiber connectivity with Holocom's zone cabling enclosures. Both companies hope the partnership will enable them to draw on their strengths to successfully market a single end-to-end solution. The Siemon Company, based in Watertown, CT, manufactures structured cabling systems and connecting hardware for voice, data and image technologies. Holocom Net works, based in Carlsbad, CA, provides solutions that simplify the delivery of network connections to the desktops of Fortune 2000 companies.
The companies claim that they are the first to offer a solution of this nature. Extensis is designed to work with all modular furniture systems, including Steelcase, Herman Miller, Knoll, DRG, and others. C.K. Siemon, vice president of reseller services for The Siemon Company, believes that his company's Category 5e, Category 6 and optical-fiber MAX outlets and patching equipment will fit neatly into Holocom's Active Gateway and Passive Gateway enclosures.
Extensis is geared toward businesses with an extensive cubicle office layout, such as a manufacturer or major bank. The solutions will cost about $150 per workstation.
Mike Clemens, marketing manager for The Siemon Company, says both companies believe Extensis will help businesses reduce labor and costs associated with moves, adds and changes to workstations, and that it will offer the ability to run cabling through pathways that retrofit on the top of modular office furniture panel systems.
At the point where the pathway meets the consolidation point, Extensis offers enclosures of various sizes that can be located throughout the office. This is designed to simplify network changes and office reconfigurations.
"Cubicles get shifted around, and this solution makes changes way easier than they would have been in the past," says Clemens.
The system is also designed to push network intelligence closer to the desktop.
"It eliminates the need to have furniture with it," says Joe Ramirez, vice president of business development for Holocom Networks. "This frees up the need to run cable through a furniture system in its simplest form."
Ramirez says one of the biggest challenges is convincing company managers that it will be advantageous to have a network that is not centrally located.
"They [company managers] are used to having control in the telecom closet," says Ramirez. "Now they are moving further out in the network. They won't lose control, but it won't be centrally located anymore."