The Silicon Review: An interview with Joe Perle

Innovative Brands of the Year Issue. Originally posted by The Silicon Review here.


Putting customers first: Perle Systems combines its extensive networking history with a dynamic and agile approach to responding to customer needs

“We don't charge subscription fees or license agreements.”

The Silicon Review Logo with Joe Perle and Quote

When Joe Perle, founder and CEO of Perle Systems, started the company in 1976, data communications and networking devices were designed using hardware-based logic. The concept of using embedded programming to replace hardware logic circuitry was just beginning. The mission of Perle Systems was to take advantage of this incipient trend to design products that are more capable, more flexible, more reliable and can reach the market more quickly.

Today Perle Systems designs and manufactures high-reliability device networking, media conversion, and Internet of Things (IoT) connectivity hardware. Perle’s extensive product range is ideal for organizations that need to establish network connectivity across multiple locations, securely transmit information, or remotely monitor and control IT devices. The company has established offices globally and sells its products through a reputable distributor, system integrator, and reseller channel.

Perle operates under the ISO 9001 certification model for quality assurance and is ISO 14001 certified to show its commitment to the environment.

The Silicon Review reached out to Joe Perle, and here’s what he had to say.

As we work with customers in a wide variety of industries, we develop a deep understanding of the multiple applications and use case scenarios where our hardware solutions fit. We draw on this knowledge as we expand functionality and design new products. We know our prospective customers have choices when it comes to selecting the right product for their needs, so we also make sure to include every feature they could ever want. We have an edge here because our products are internally developed, giving Perle complete ownership and control over its hardware and software intellectual property.

In addition, we don't charge subscription fees or license agreements. All features are included in the base price of the product, with free software upgrades and access to live technical support. Our products are designed to achieve extraordinarily high MTBF rates in real-world environments and only use trusted components from leading western chip manufacturers to ensure quality and seamlessly interoperate with any network architecture. And if anything goes wrong, we back up our products with the best warranties.

Dedicated to innovation and quality, Perle continues to grow through R&D. By educating customers on the advantages of evolving technologies and removing barriers to their adoption, the company delivers products that meet ever-changing requirements while future-proofing the investment. 

A combination of youth and experience drives Perle. We have retained some staff for over 35 years while employing university graduates to bring fresh ideas into the company.

Perle: Products Portfolio

Perle products include 5G and LTE Routers, Secure Console Servers for Out-of-Band Management, Media Converters, and Industrial Switches.

Cellular 5G & LTE Routers: Perle IRG Routers are designed to leverage the reliability and flexibility of cellular networking to minimize the cost of downtime, reduce service calls, and bring distributed sites online faster. Whether enabling secure financial transactions from a retail location, or routing data in rugged outdoor environments, Perle cellular routers and gateways accelerate the deployment of high-performance networking with secure connectivity, location-based services, and remote management. Perle IRG Cellular Routers are certified on 3G, 4G, and 5G bands internationally to deliver reliable connectivity to any remote location or hazardous environment.

Secure Console Servers: Perle IOLAN Console Servers enable secure remote console management of any device with a serial, USB, or Ethernet console management port. It is a single hardware solution that provides a secure alternate route to manage routers, switches, firewalls, servers, storage appliances, and power devices from multiple vendors. While software management tools can be used for performance monitoring, and some remote troubleshooting, they only work when the network is up. Using a Console Server as an Out-of-Band Management Solution ensures that on-site infrastructure is accessible during system or network outages. They can be used to reconfigure, reboot, and reimage devices remotely for better visibility of the physical environment and status of equipment. They are ideal for data centers and large distributed enterprises that may not have on-site IT staff at each location like banks, insurance companies, hospitals, utilities, retail, and schools.

Media Converters: Perle IOLAN Console Servers enable secure remote console management of any device with a serial, USB, or Ethernet console management port. It is a single hardware solution that provides a secure alternate route to manage routers, switches, firewalls, servers, storage appliances, and power devices from multiple vendors. While software management tools can be used for performance monitoring, and some remote troubleshooting, they only work when the network is up. Using a Console Server as an Out-of-Band Management Solution ensures that on-site infrastructure is accessible during system or network outages. They can be used to reconfigure, reboot, and reimage devices remotely for better visibility of the physical environment and status of equipment. They are ideal for data centers and large distributed enterprises that may not have on-site IT staff at each location like banks, insurance companies, hospitals, utilities, retail, and schools.

Perle Serial to Ethernet Converters are used to connect any device with an RS232, RS422, or RS485 serial interface to a local area network for transmission of serial data over Ethernet to network server applications. With a physical wired or wireless Ethernet connection on one side, and one or more serial ports on the other, users can access attached serial devices on the network as if they were locally connected. They make M2M communication possible in a wide variety of applications by enabling access independent of any operating system or proprietary protocol.

Perle also has a variety of media converters available to transparently connect serial to fiber, bi-directionally convert RS232 interface signals to RS485 and RS422, and control remote I/O, relays, and sensors.

Industrial Switches: Perle IDS Ethernet Switches are specifically designed to connect devices in network environments that are subject to vibrations, shocks, and temperatures of -40°F to 167°F. By exceeding the specifications of commercial switches with industrial safety certification and approval for hazardous locations, they are ideal for use in harsh conditions. These Layer-2 Ethernet switches feature industrial protocol management support, superior reliability, advanced security, network redundancy, and easy installation and configuration. Perle also has an extensive range of PoE Switches that have a built-in Power over Ethernet injector to supply up to 100 watts to attached surveillance cameras, VoIP phones, and wireless access points.

Ethernet Extenders: As the IoT grows, and networks expand, one challenge is dealing with copper-based Ethernet connections that have a data transmission limit of only 328 feet. Installing additional cable to solve the problem is costly. The alternative is to tap into unused wiring that was abandoned as systems were upgraded over the years. Perle Ethernet Extenders utilize existing copper wire to provide seamless data transmission up to 12.4 miles. While Perle’s extensive range is perfect for communication links in commercial buildings they also solve problems in other applications. For environments where AC or DC power is unavailable, like installing security cameras in ceilings or on top of light posts, Perle has PoE Extenders that provide up to 30 watts of power, enable the remote reboot of attached devices, and protect equipment from damage. Perle Industrial Extenders are designed for use with outdoor devices in traffic management pipelines and weather-tracking applications. And, for environments where network security is critical, Perle Managed Ethernet Extenders support all AAA security services used in corporate networks. 

Roadmap

At Perle Systems, our growth is driven by finding new ways to make data communications and networking more effective and efficient. That's why we're expanding our offering to include more wireless connectivity products in our rugged cellular router and out-of-band management console server product lines.

A customer using a Perle product should have a flawless experience. It will start with fully knowledgeable product selection assistance, deployment support, and most importantly a product that will operate as advertised for the life of its installation.

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