Wireless Web Digest: Trouble in WLAN Land

In this edition of the Supersite's Web Digest, the good news is that Wi-Fi sales continue to rise. The bad news is that increasing competitive pressure is making times tough for chip vendors. Plus, Microsoft in Scandinavia, and more...

Wi-Fi Gear Sales Up In First Quarter

The market for Wi-Fi networking equipment grew 1 percent in the first quarter of the year to $411 million, research firm DellOro Group said Tuesday. Linksys led the market in sales and recorded an 18 percent growth in revenue. Cisco, Buffalo, D-Link, and NetGear rounded out the top five, in order. The report tracked several product categories, including access points, broadband gateways, and network interface cards.

Read the full story on: Techweb

Hard Times in WLANs

The pressures on a growing list of wireless-LAN chip startups is more than a sign of a stubborn downturn. Troubles at Magis, ShareWave, LinCom and other companies signal confusion among consumer electronics companies still scrambling to identify the right WLAN technology, the right standard and the right chip partners to work with. Many in the industry believe that Magis and other WLAN chip suppliers are falling victim to high expectations for a wireless home-networking boom that hasnt yet materialized. A host of startups, particularly those focused on home entertainment applications, have exhausted investors patience before delivering any chips.

Read the full story on: CommsDesign

Wireless Standards Groups Merge

By mid-June, the PAM Forum, a consortium working on presence and availability (P&A) security standards within the wireless industry, will become part of the Parlay Group, a multi-vendor industry consortium encouraging common standards across wireless and other networks, the groups announced Tuesday. The PAM Forum has worked on a specification consisting of APIs (application programming interfaces) designed to allow wireless networks to securely share information. Presence and availability standards focus on security and privacy on wireless devices, including issues such as keeping unauthorized users off wireless networks. The PAM Forum, created in early 2000, will become the presence and availability management (PAM) working group within the Parlay Group, which has wireless vendors and operators as its membership base. Members include LM Ericsson, Hewlett-Packard, Lucent Technologies. and NTT DoCoMo.

Read the full story on: InfoWorld

HP Rolls Out Wireless LAN Wares

Hewlett-Packard on Monday announced a set of wireless networking (WLAN) products, putting its ProCurve Networking division front and center in the battle for control of wireless access points and the management of enterprise wireless infrastructure with wireless switches. HP is the first major vendor to announce wireless switches; the competition is primarily from startups such as Aruba. Wireless switches sit between the wireless access points and the wired network, letting IT administrators control user access, configure wireless access points (APs), and set policies from one spot, then apply them to all clients entering the WLAN. Without wireless switches, the IT staff must make such changes to each AP individually.

Read the full story on: Internet Week

Microsoft, General Wireless Team on SMS

A Swedish mobile messaging companys software will be offered for integration into Microsoft Office 2003, allowing users to send SMS (Short Message Service) messages from Microsoft Outlook. General Wireless and Microsoft will work together on the offering first in Sweden, but the agreement is global and can be extended to other markets, according to a General Wireless statement released Monday. Viva Technologies, in Oslo, Norway, currently offers an SMS application called MailSMS that it says can be integrated with Outlook.

Read the full story on: InfoWorld