45,000 Network Professionals, Service Providers, Regulators, Consultants, Suppliers and Resellers Pack COMNET Conference & Expo

FRAMINGHAM, MA – FEBRUARY 13, 2001 – Exhibitors and speakers at the 23rd annual COMNET Conference & Expo held January 29 – February 1, 2001, in the Washington, D.C. Convention Center, showcased products and technologies designed to make any time, anywhere communications a reality.


As integrated messaging, remote access and voice-over-IP offerings took center stage among the more than 100 new products unveiled at the show, vendors demonstrated their intent to make it easier for end-users to communicate easily, flexibly and seamlessly.

Attendees packed exhibit halls, keynote speeches, panels and user labs to engage in interactive discussions about the growing influence of next-generation telecommunication solutions on business and government. This year, networking professionals seized opportunities to network and partake in various educational tutorials to discuss hot topics like data privacy, optical networking and the value of Management Service Providers.

On the show floor, more than 450 exhibitors showcased a number of offerings, including those designed to help users talk, exchange, and extract information via fiber-optic and IP technology. For example, Village Networks, a winner of COMNET's New Product Achievement Award, introduced an integrated networking node that incorporates light-speed packet processing with optical switching technology. A few booths down, networking leader CISCO Systems launched a modular, IP-based videoconferencing solution that can support up to 400 conference participants simultaneously.

For the 10th consecutive year, COMNET's New Product Achievement Awards, sponsored by InfoWorld, recognized the launch of new products to the COMNET audience.

The New Product Achievement Award-winners were:

Most Innovative Product or Service

Winner: Norwood Systems

Product: EnterpriseMobility


Winner: Atoga Systems, Inc.

Product: Optical Application Router (OAR 5)


Winner: Larscom

Product: Larscom 3000


Winner: NEGEN Access, Inc.

Product: NEGEN Neighborhood Family

Network Infrastructure

Winner: Village Networks

Product: iOPN2000

Network Management

Winner: ANTARA.net

Product: FlameThrower


Winner: Apogee Networks, Inc.

Product: NetCountant Settlement for Digital Rights Management



Winner: Sylantro Systems

Product: ComMerchant


Winner: Norwood Systems

Product: EnterpriseMobility

Vendors and exhibitors were not the only ones to discuss the breakthroughs and developments in telecommunications technology. The winner of Network World's User Excellence Award, Kent State University, attested to saving over $16 million with the adoption of Nortel's photonic infrastructure for a fully converged network, with statewide voice, data and video access.

Other areas that received noteworthy attention from exhibitors and attendees alike included increased bandwidth availability and regulation, as well as building intelligent networks. Spectrum allocation issues were debated in the Town Meeting entitled, "Telecommunications Policy and Regulation in the New Administration," and throughout its presentations, digital communications provider ADTRAN echoed the belief that the need for bandwidth would drive up the demand for high-speed network access products.

"For several years, we have heard about the promise of streamlining communication between different mediums," said Charlie Greco, president and CEO of IDG World Expo, owners and producers of COMNET. "At COMNET this year, we saw actual case studies and product demonstrations that proved the market is delivering concrete, converged solutions."

"It is clear that a revolution is going on in the communication industry and we are excited to be part of it," said Louis Bucher, System Engineer, Standards & Architecture Group, Clarent Products. "The multitude of new product offerings and network applications clearly exhibit that the revolution is progressing faster than the industry anticipates."

Tom Brokaw, anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News, kicked off the event with a keynote speech in which he discussed the freedoms and perils of increased access to technology. Other conference highlights included, Clarence Chandran, COO of Nortel Networks, revealing his vision of optical networking, and Dennis Strigl, president and CEO of Verizon Wireless, speaking about the future of wireless technology as the centerpiece of communication.

COMNET Conference & Expo sponsors included Aura Networks, Catena Networks, Crescent Networks, Tellabs, Top Layer, Rapid5 Networks, Sedona Networks, Performance Technologies, Inc. and Sprint.


COMNET, produced by IDG World Expo, is the premier conference and expo for companies building business value through intelligent networks. In 2000, more than 450 manufacturers and suppliers of networking and communications hardware, software, services and solutions participated in COMNET.