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Cisco to buy ClearAccess’ software operation

Wed, 03/28/2012 - 3:03pm
Brian Santo

Cisco said it is in the process of buying the software half of ClearAccess. With the purchase, Cisco will secure direct control over the TR-069 provisioning and device management it is already using in some of its products.

ClearAccess also makes gateways for DSL and Ethernet networks; that business will continue independently under the name SmartRG.

Neither company revealed a purchase price.

Consumers have enthusiastically adopted new technologies for sharing media in their homes. That has compounded a problem for service providers, which have little visibility into any networking activities beyond the set-tops or routers they provide.

The TR-069 standard addresses those issues, giving service providers a means to identify and manage devices in the home and the ability to manage the networking activity among those devices.

DSL network operators were the key proponents of the development of TR-069, accomplished under the aegis of the Broadband Forum. But TR-069 was designed from the start to be applicable to DOCSIS products, as well, and while ClearAccess’ own gateways were for DSL networks, the company has been working with a number of companies that also cater to DOCSIS customers.

That includes Cisco, officially a ClearAccess partner. Other gateway partners with DOCSIS products include ActionTec, D-Link, Netgear and Technicolor. Broadcom began incorporating TR-069 support in its set-top controller ICs at the end of 2010.

Cisco said the acquisition will augment its network management software portfolio, called Cisco Prime, by offering service providers a set of tools for managing the connected home, including monitoring and managing bandwidth usage, parental controls, diagnostics and analytics.

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