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Sage Research Announces the Decline of Category 5 Cabling; Over 50% of Organizations will Begin Replacing Cabling within Two Years.

NATICK, Mass.--(Business Wire)--Jan. 5, 1999--A survey of nearly 300 networking professionals, recently conducted by Sage Research, Inc., finds that most are looking to upgrade their older category 3, category 5 and STP cabling to enhanced category 5, category 6 and fiber optic cabling. Based on this study of international and domestic organizations, 57% will upgrade at least part of their networks within two years.

Of the newer cable types being installed, fiber optic cabling is making a strong push, not only in the campus network, but also in the horizontal and vertical networks. However, use of fiber optic cabling varies by area of the network. Specifically, fiber is currently the dominant cable type in the campus network, but has a lower presence in the building backbone and horizontal network. However in the building backbone and horizontal network, Sage projects that fiber, enhanced category 5 and category 6 cabling will replace category 5 cabling as the most common cable types within the next two years.

As installation and equipment costs continue to fall, fiber optic cabling is becoming the cabling of choice. "Companies are finding that they can `future-proof' by installing fiber in their network" notes Matthew Grady, co-author of the report. "Whereas, those companies that install copper cabling are faced with replacing it as bandwidth demands increase. It is just a matter of time before companies realize lifetime cabling costs are more important than upfront installation costs."

"Category 5's stranglehold on the LAN cabling market is waning" notes Kathryn Korostoff, Sage's president. "Therefore, network equipment manufacturers will need to support fiber optic cabling, as well as the next generation of copper cabling, to meet customers' emerging needs."

"Category 5 cabling's time has past, but network managers do not know where to turn next," notes Matthew Grady, Sage's Project Manager. "Previously, everyone knew that category 5 cabling was the cable to install. However, the current lack of standards leaves network managers wondering where to move their networks next. The standards bodies really need to step up to the plate and define the next cable generation before it is time to move on to even faster cabling."

These results are available, along with other cable-related data, in Sage's latest Reality Check report, "The Network Cabling Market: A Reality Check." For more information, please contact Sage Research at (508) 655-5400 or by email at

About Sage Research

Founded in 1993, Sage Research delivers market data to firms in the networking, communications, computer equipment and software industries. With expertise in both high-technology markets and statistical analysis, Sage Research delivers reliable, objective, customer-sourced market data. Sage Research's Reality Check series of qualitative and quantitative research investigates issues that are critical to organizations that thrive in the high tech marketplace.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 5, 1999
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