News Release

Cisco Offers World's Lowest Latency Networking Technology for High Performance Data Center Environments

Worldwide networking leader delivers up to 60% faster
Sep 19, 2012

 Worldwide networking leader delivers up to 60% faster performance than competitors

Financial traders gain competitive edge with Cisco Nexus 3548 high-performance switch that breaks the 200-nanosecond latency barrier

San Jose, Calif. – Sept. 19, 2012 – Cisco today announced the Cisco Nexus® 3548 with Algorithm Boost (or Algo Boost) technology, a groundbreaking networking innovation which delivers up to 60 percent network-access performance improvement over competing full-featured 10 Gigabit (GB) Ethernet switches[1].  Designed for use in high performance computing, high performance trading, and big data environments, this new switch offers network-access performance as low as 190 nanoseconds (ns) – a huge performance improvement enabled by the unique Algo Boost technology developed by silicon engineers at Cisco.

With numerous patents pending, the Cisco Nexus 3548 switch extends Cisco's leadership in networking by pairing performance and ultra-low-latency with innovations in visibility, automation, monitoring and precise time synchronization.

Network performance is of paramount importance in high performance trading markets where obtaining and acting on real-time equities, options and other financial market information   nanoseconds faster than competitors may be worth millions of dollars.  The Nexus® 3548 can give traders a competitive advantage. Globally interconnected financial markets have elevated the demands on trading networks, making visibility and control equally critical to performance.  Proactive management of market volatility, granular real-time monitoring, and precision timing accuracy of trade events give trading participants greater control and visibility at peak opportunity times across the globe.   By providing these capabilities, the Cisco Nexus 3548 with Algo Boost enhances the Cisco High Performance Trading Fabric architecture that helps enable greater business agility and intelligence for customers without imposing performance or latency penalties.

 Key Highlights:

 Cisco ultra-low-latency switch with Cisco Algo Boost technology, is the fastest full-featured Ethernet switch in the industry

  • The Nexus 3548 one-rack-unit (1RU) 10 GB Ethernet switch running in "warp mode" offers latencies as low as 190 ns in those environments with small to medium Layer 2 and Layer 3 scaling requirements.
  • The ultra-low-latency switch also facilitates the efficient delivery of stock market data to financial trading servers in as little as 50 ns with the warp switch port analyzer (SPAN) feature.
  • The Nexus 3548 also includes Hitless Network Address Translation (NAT), a critical feature to allow algorithmic traders to easily connect to any trading venue they desire without any latency penalty.
  • Cisco Nexus 3548 switch latency speeds were verified using Spirent TestCenter  across various workloads and using testing specifications developed jointly with Spirent Communications.

Superior analytical framework gives greater visibility for high-performance environments

  • The Nexus 3548 is the first switch to integrate the unique Cisco® Algo Boost technology in the ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuits) switching silicon that provides granular visibility into how the switch is performing while in production to help financial traders accelerate price discovery, increase order flow liquidity, and better manage regulatory requirements.
  • Precision Time Protocol helps trading firms keep their entire infrastructure highly synchronized, allowing them to correlate network events and better achieve regulatory compliance and digital forensics.
  • Active Buffer Monitoring proactively monitors and alerts users to congestion points that could be occurring and may negatively impact application performance.
  • Intelligent Traffic Mirroring consists of filtering and nanosecond time-stamping of captured traffic, which can help traders gain greater visibility into why gapping, slippage and slow order situations occur, correlating these trends with analytics tools to help enable smarter trading decisions.

 Supporting Quotes:

Nigel Harold, head of Business Development Technology, London Stock Exchange
"London Stock Exchange is at the heart of the global financial market and home to some of the largest, most successful and dynamic companies in the world. Our members expect to connect using high performing and reliable infrastructure for real-time trading and market data. The new Algo Boost ASIC technology, that will be available in Cisco Nexus 3548 switch, offers ultra-low latency and unique features that can increase our visibility across the network and further boost reliability for our customers."

David Rukshin, senior vice president, The D. E. Shaw Group
"We trade in markets around the globe in an increasingly competitive environment, and investing in state-of-the art technology is one of the keys to producing attractive returns for our investors.  Detecting and handling short-lived congestion in information flows is business critical, since the latency of packets that experience congestion in the network would be significantly higher than the nominal latency of modern Ethernet switches.  Detecting these microbursts of traffic and measuring short-lived congestion in hardware should be very valuable to our investment businesses."

 David Yen, senior vice president of Data Center Group at Cisco
"Today, Cisco has leapfrogged our competitors in delivering a full featured switch that offers the lowest latency Ethernet in the networking industry. The Nexus 3548 with the unique Cisco Algo Boost technology implemented in ASIC provides a robust feature set to give financial traders more control over their sophisticated trading algorithms and respond more quickly to the changes in the market. In addition to the performance, this unique ultra-low-latency Ethernet technology is part of the unified data center fabric and offers strong total cost of ownership for commercial high-performance computing and big data environments as well as scale-out storage topologies."

 Supporting Resource Links:

Tags: ASIC, Cisco, High Performance Trading, High Performance Computing, HPC, London Stock Exchange, Network Innovation, Nexus, High-Performance Trading Fabric, Unified Fabric, Nexus 3000, Nexus 3K, Nexus 3500, Nexus 3548

 About Cisco:
Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Information about Cisco can be found at For ongoing news, please go to

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[1] 60% faster performance and lowest latency is based on published reports from Cisco and competitive 10 GB Ethernet Layer 2/3 switch vendors