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WLAN shipments poised for double-digit growth

Posted: 24 Sep 2002 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share


While most technology sectors are struggling, the WLAN industry is positioned for double-digit growth, said Dataquest Inc., a unit of Gartner Inc. In 2002, worldwide WLAN shipments are expected to experience a 73 percent growth and revenues are seen to increase by 26 percent. Dataquest reported that the industry will sustain this growth thru 2003 with revenues expected to reach $2.8 billion, up from $2.1 billion in 2002.

According to Andy Rolfe, principal analyst for Dataquest, the increase in WLAN-enabled mobile PCs and PDAs will drive the demand for WLAN access in a variety of locations such as homes for teleworkers and 'day extenders', public spaces or 'hotspots', and enterprise premises, to support mobile access to business applications. Rolfe added that as WLAN equipment prices continue to fall and speed increases, wireless solutions will become a more viable alternative to wired LANs in small premises because bandwidth demands are lower in small sites, and the cost of cabling for wired Ethernet is higher than in larger premises.

Dataquest further said that the penetration rate of WLAN into the professional mobile PC installed base will grow from nine percent in 2000, to almost 50 percent by the end of 2003, and it is expected to surpass 90 percent by 2007.

The research firm also added that most WLANs are currently being purchased as an add-on PC adapter, but in 2002, about 10 percent of all mobile PCs are expected to be shipped with a WLAN included, consequently increasing sales by 31 percent in 2004. By 2007, Dataquest forecasts that 68 percent of mobile PCs being shipped will include a WLAN.

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