Feeds

WLAN goes gangbusters

Leader of the Pack

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Wireless LAN shipments more than doubled in 2002.

According to analysts Gartner, worldwide WLAN equipment shipments totalled 19.5 million units in 2002, 120 per cent up from 2001 shipments of 8.9 million units. Revenues increased a more modest 29 per cent because of the falling price of kit as the market becomes commoditised.

"As one of the few growth areas in network equipment, the wireless LAN market is attracting a large number of vendors. The resulting competition is forcing prices down, benefiting end-users by creating a wide choice of low-cost products," said Andy Rolfe, principal analyst for Gartner's worldwide telecommunications and networking group.

Buoyed by its strength in the wireless LAN adapter and wireless LAN broadband gateway segments, Linksys overtook Cisco Systems as the leading wireless equipment vendor in 2002, accounting for 14.1 percent of end-user spending ($306.4m). Cisco slipped to the No. 2 position with a 13.9 percent market share ($302.9).

Since these figures were compiled, Cisco has acquired Linksys (more anon) in a move that increases its grip. But unlike LAN switching and routing, Cisco does not control a majority of the market.

Major players include Buffalo Technology ($200.7m - 9.2 per cent of the market), D-Link ($174.5m 8 per cent) and Proxim ($172.3m - 7.9 per cent). Others account for 46.9 per cent.

Linksys also led the worldwide wireless LAN industry based on unit shipments in 2002 with 14.6 percent of the market (2.86 million units shipped). D-Link was the number two vendor with a 9.6 percent market share (1.88 million units).

According to Gartner, it has become much more difficult to challenge Cisco for leadership of WLAN market, following its acquisition of Linksys.

"In acquiring Linksys, Cisco is re-entering the high-growth consumer and SOHO network markets. We expect Cisco to expand the Linksys distribution channel to include telecom service providers that want home networking products to bundle with their broadband offerings," Rolfe said.

Gartner says the wireless LAN market will continue to grow, but it warns end users of the dangers of adopting proprietary technology.

"Demand for the benefits of mobile access to corporate applications will continue to drive strong growth in the sales of wireless LAN equipment. The market requires multi-vendor compatibility, since wireless LAN adapters are being increasingly integrated into new mobile PCs," said Rolfe. "However, the standards are as yet incomplete, particularly with regard to security. End-users and wireless LAN service providers should not rely on overly proprietary features, but should employ standard wireless LAN networks and provide security at higher layers."

Gartner Dataquest's report Wireless LAN Equipment: Worldwide, 2002 can be purchased here. ®

Related Stories

802.11g is a standard (official)
Trojan Horse warning, as Cisco 'gives away' extensions to WLAN
Wi-Fi hotspots mean some burnt fingers
Cisco looks for WLAN boost
Cisco snaps up Linksys in home networking assault

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?
They can take our lives, but they'll never take our SPECTRUM
Bring back error correction, say Danish 'net boffins
We don't need no steenkin' TCP/IP retransmission and the congestion it causes
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?
Russian launch for Sammy's non-droid knocked back
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
Seeking LTE expert to insert small cells into BT customers' places
Is this the first step to a FON-a-like 4G network?
What FTC lawsuit? T-Mobile US touts 10GB, $100 family-of-4 plan
Folks 'could use that money for more important things' says CEO Legere
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.