As the U.S. approaches the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, there are likely more than a few IT folks who are saying thanks for the ISR 4000 Series, and the challenges it has addressed. Over the past year, we’ve had over 1,000 customers deploy the ISR 4000 Series, and the industry has repeatedly validated the positive impact of the platform on the IT and networking community:

• “Best of Networking” Award, Best of Interop in Las Vegas (April 2014)
• “Best of Networking” Award, Best of Interop in Tokyo (June 2014)
• And most recently: “Networking Product of the Year” Award, Tech World (November 2014)

TechWorld Awards

Why is the ISR 4000 Series on such a winning streak? I think it can be best explained by one of my colleagues in the field, who wisely stated, “ISR 4000 is the gift that keeps on giving.” What he means is that customers who buy the ISR 4000 Series for one business goal, are often pleasantly surprised to discover that the same platform can solve so many new problems. For example, his customer was a school district that needed to improve application performance. They loved how Cisco Wide Area Network Services that ran natively on the ISR 4000 Series allowed 40 students to run applications in a lab simultaneously without a hitch. Later, they were embarking on delivering a cloud-based learning application with HD video, and were happy to hear that Cisco was partnering with Akamai to provide local caching at remote sites. Another problem solved, and no new hardware was required. Now that is a beautiful thing!

This multi-service platform that continues to offer more capabilities provides a huge advantage for customers. Today, IT is being asked to meet new business requirements at an accelerating pace.  The MIT Sloan School estimates that 78% of business leaders will need to achieve a digital transformation in the next two years.  Similarly, Gartner believes that traffic will grow 20-50% a year through 2018. And Nemertes Research has found that most organizations – 60% in fact – will have no additional WAN budget to deal with those new challenges.

The ISR 4000 Series could not have been introduced at a better time.

To solve today’s many IT obstacles, customers need speed, scale and services – and the ISR 4000 Series can deliver all three without compromise.


This platform is 4-10 times faster than the ISR G2, ranging from 50 Mbps to 2 Gbps. This will help address the growth in throughput demands that Gartner predicts!


The ISR provides pay-as-you-grow performance and services. That means IT only needs to buy what they require today, because if their business needs change, they can get a software license to turn on additional performance and/or services as needed. This means that the platform can not only quickly respond to new business requirements, but also support the organization for a long time without becoming outdated.

The ISR 4000 is also designed for zero touch deployment, where IT can ship the device directly to the remote site, preloaded with customer configurations, and the router can securely ‘call home’ to get credentials and connect up to the network.  Moreover, when new modules need to be added to the device, ISR 4000 supports online-insertion-removal, so that the site does not have to go down to implement the update.

ISR 4000 is also ‘SDN ready.’ The Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller Enterprise Module (APIC-EM) will be coming to market early 2015, so developers and customers will finally be able to move away from device-by-device management to a system approach based on business policy and application rules.


To build on its speed and scale, the ISR 4000 has been redesigned with dedicated processors for the control, data and services planes. This allows IT to add multiple advanced services – VPN, firewall, application visibility, path selection, WAN optimization, voice, video surveillance, and more – all on one platform with minimal performance impact.

In fact, the architecture supports service containers that are essentially virtual pluggable machines. This means IT can carve out dedicated resources to ensure high reliability as if it was operating on a dedicated appliance, but benefit from a consolidated form factor – resulting less devices to manage at remote sites.

IT can also expand the platform to add up to 8 TB of compute services that address a variety of branch office needs, including local application hosting for better performance, data back-up, and local analytics.

ISR has been the industry leader in branch networking technology and that tradition is still going strong. In the words of industry analyst Zeus Kerravala, “Cisco flat out makes the best router and has never taken its eye off the router ball.” The re-architected ISR 4000 Series is further evidence of that focus, work that has earned the product broad industry recognition and more than 1,000 customers who have adopted the new platform to drive greater business agility.

So this holiday season, we’re grateful for all of the ISR 4000’s positive recognition, and more importantly, we’re thankful for the opportunity to share our technology with so many of the companies that keep the economy moving and make that work just a little bit easier.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Learn more about the award winning ISR 4000 at http://www.cisco.com/go/isr4000



Raakhee Mistry

Senior Director

EN & Cloud Marketing