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New Transition Networks ION 4110 Fiber to Fiber Repeater Enables 10 Gbps Backbone Network Upgrades Over Existing Fiber Infrastructure

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Transition Networks, Inc., the fiber access technology expert, a wholly owned subsidiary of Communications Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ-GM: JCS), today announced the ION 4110, a protocol independent fiber to fiber repeater that supports data rates from 1 Gbps to 11.5 Gbps. This any-rate to same-rate device will allow IT managers to extend the reach of their high-speed backbone networks without the need to upgrade their fiber-optic cabling infrastructure.

As innovative networking technologies and speeds are established, additional cabling standards are introduced simultaneously to support them. Organizations deploying these new technologies are faced with two options: incur the expense of upgrading cable plants to the latest standards to support maximum transmission distances, or find ways to utilize existing cabling resources while still taking advantage of the new technologies.

The ION 4110 repeats the data signals and transmits them over the fiber cabling already available to organizations within their existing networks. This could include single mode fiber to multimode fiber applications, as well as multimode to multimode.

The Telecommunications Industry Association has defined four grades of multimode fiber-optic cable (OM1 – OM4), each of which has different characteristics and transmission capacity. OM1 is a widely installed grade of fiber-optic cable; however, it limits 10 Gigabit Ethernet transmission distances to just 33 meters, compared to OM4 which can transmit 10 Gigabit Ethernet data up to 400 meters.

The ION 4110 re-amplifies, reshapes and retimes (3R) fiber optic signals to restore wavelength integrity, ensuring that data can be repeated multiple times to meet all required network distances, regardless of the type of fiber installed in the network.

The device features two ports for pluggable optics and is protocol agnostic, supporting any network standard with a data rate of between 1 Gbps and 11.5 Gbps. This includes 10 Gigabit Ethernet, Fibre Channel, OC192 SONET/SDH or course wave-division multiplexed (CWDM) networks.

The ION 4110 can be used as a stand-alone repeater or be paired with the new one-slot or two-slot ION chassis for wiring closet applications at the network edge. For higher density applications, the ION 4110 can be used with Transition Networks’ 19-slot ION chassis, which also offers SNMP management and power redundancy.

“As enterprises upgrade wired access networks to 1 Gbps speeds and implement new multi-gigabit WiFi standards, backbone networks are becoming the choke point, driving the move to 10G in these uplink connections,” said Tony LeFebvre, Director of Product Management for Transition Networks. “The ION 4110 offers enterprise network managers a more cost-effective way to deploy 10 Gigabit Ethernet over existing fiber-optic infrastructure.”

“Anytime a network update requires a change to the cabling infrastructure, it becomes a much bigger undertaking,” said Stephen Montgomery, president of ElectroniCast, and industry analyst covering the market for media converters and repeaters. “A product like the ION 4110 should find a strong market because it provides a low-cost and low complexity way to deliver the bandwidth needed.”

Availability

Transition Networks will begin accepting orders for the ION 4110 in March through its global sales force and channel partners.

About Transition Networks, Inc.

Transition Networks, Inc. is an industry leader with over 25 years of experience designing fiber integration products that deliver the security and reliability for today’s networks while future proofing for tomorrow. Offering support for multiple protocols, any interface, and a multitude of hardware platforms, including Hardened Ethernet, Carrier Ethernet, CWDM, 1G/10G Ethernet, SFPs, PoE and PoE+, Transition Networks gives you the power to deliver and manage traffic reliably over fiber in any data network – in any application – in any environment. Based in Minneapolis, Transition Networks distributes hardware-based connectivity solutions exclusively through a network of resellers in 50 countries. Transition Networks is a wholly owned subsidiary of Communications Systems, Inc., a publicly traded company (NASDAQ-GM: JCS). For more information about Transition Networks, please visit www.transition.com.

Statements regarding the Company’s anticipated performance in 2015 are forward-looking and involve risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to: competitive products and other factors discussed from time to time in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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