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Cisco unveils gear to cope with pandemic demand, 5G

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FILE PHOTO: The logo of US networks giant Cisco Systems is seen at their headquarters in Issy-les-Moulineaux, near Paris
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STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Cisco Systems Inc on Tuesday announced new products to help mobile network operators manage increased data traffic generated by homeworking because of the pandemic and as the 5G rollout connects billions more devices to the internet.

Remote healthcare services, streaming video and gaming and homeworking have led to a 25%-45% increase in internet traffic in many regions across the globe since the COVID-19 pandemic, Cisco said.

And 5G will mean billions more internet-connected devices.

Cisco says it expects nearly 30 billion connected devices in 2023, compared with 18.4 billion in 2018.

It is proposing an approach to designing the network, open to all systems, and says its new routing gear will help telecom operators to build up high-capacity networks at reduced cost.

It has signed up clients, including Airtel, Google Cloud, Rakuten Mobile, Telenor and Telia Carrier.

"There's still 3 billion people on the planet who are under-served, which means they can't get enough connectivity or they're completely unconnected," Jonathan Davidson, senior vice president and general manager at Cisco, told Reuters in an interview.

(Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee, European Technology & Telecoms Correspondent, based in Stockholm; editing by Barbara Lewis)