We are pleased to announce the launch of a whole new category of switches: micro switches.

Cisco Catalyst Micro Switches provide Gigabit Ethernet and PoE+ in ultra-small 4-port form factors that can be mounted in cable ducts or on the desktop.

For those looking to provide Gigabit ethernet right to the end device, these full-featured, enterprise-class switches make it easy for you to extend intent-based networking all the way to your work-zones.

What in the world is a micro switch?

In the world of networking, micro switches are small Ethernet switches with 4 to 6 ports downlinks and 2 SFP or copper uplinks. These come in small form factors that can be discretely mounted right near the endpoints that connect to them, such as a cable duct or on a desktop. Micro switches are commonly used in Fiber-to-the-office (FTTO) network architectures, and allow for a simpler, more flexible environment.

Catalyst Micro Switch Series

Why would I deploy FTTO?

In a FTTO network, fiber optic cable is pulled throughout the building instead of copper. The extended range and higher bandwidth of fiber means that only one aggregation closet is needed to supply the entire building. This thereby eliminates the need for intermediate distribution frames, freeing up valuable real estate and reducing hardware, electricity and cooling infrastructure. In addition, failure control is highly localized, and floorplans can be easily reconfigured.

Illustration of FTTO architecture in a health care setting

Enterprise-grade security

As a part of the Cisco Catalyst switch product line, the new micro switches will incorporate many of the same enhanced and integrated security features customers depend on to protect information and infrastructure.

  • 1x authentication
  • IPv4 first hop security
  • Trustworthy Solutions
  • Automated policy-based segmentation with Cisco Software-Defined Access

Simple installation and management

We designed the new micro switches with simplicity and compatibility in mind, to make deployment and management as easy as possible.

  • Snap-in mounting hardware
  • Industry-compatible power supplies
  • Cisco network Plug and Play
  • Manage with Cisco DNA Center, CLI or third-party software

Reliable PoE

Ensure that the IoT devices running on Power over Ethernet (PoE) have a consistent source of power.

  • PoE+ with Perpetual PoE continues power to devices even when switch is rebooted
  • USB-C ports on desktop model deliver up to 60W

Catalyst Micro Switch desktop model showing USB-C ports

Notable use cases

There are several situations in which the strategy of placing micro switches near the end devices is very desirable. These include:

  • Update existing FTTx infrastructure: if you are looking to update your existing micro switches, look no further. The Cisco Catalyst Micro Switches conform to the Mosaic-45×45 industrial standard and are compatible with most of your existing mounting accessories. It can even reuse selected third-party power-supplies. “Switching Over” has never been easier.
  • New buildings and major retrofits: Some organizations are turning to an FTTO type of network architecture in order to support higher bandwidth applications. This is commonly determined during planning and design of a new building, since changing over from full copper cabling to full fiber is a major retrofit. A major advantage here is having Cisco hardware throughout the network, making it easier to manage everything from a single pane of glass with Cisco DNA Center, and even roll out a Software-Defined Access network fabric.
  • Widespread physical spaces: In locations like airports, stadiums and entertainment venues, fiber optic cable is preferable over copper due to distance limitations of copper. This makes it possible to have just one network to manage and allows IT to take advantage of the full capabilities of Cisco DNA Center.
  • PoE-powered workspaces: Cisco Catalyst Micro Switches  provide Power over Ethernet to power wireless access points as well as the myriad IoT devices that are being adopted to automate building systems. The desktop model can provide power over integrated USB-C ports, making it possible to power laptops from a switch located near the user. These features make the micro switches a great option for health care, hospitality and smart buildings.


The Catalyst Micro Switches aren’t the only fiber-based switching options Cisco has available. These go well with the fiber models within the Catalyst 9000 family of switches, including:

Whether you are looking to refresh your existing micro switch deployments or are planning a new building with FTTO, Cisco Catalyst Micro Switches are just what you need right where you need it.


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Leslie Van Zee

Product Marketing Manager

Enterprise Networking