June 23, 2008

802.11n Equipment Sales Show Continued Momentum One Year After Wi-Fi Alliance(R) Certification Begins

AUSTIN, Texas, June 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Just one year after the Wi-Fi Alliance introduced 802.11n draft 2.0 certification, the upward trajectory of this next-generation Wi-Fi technology continues unabated. Nearly 50 percent of Wi-Fi chipsets sold this year are expected to adhere to the new superfast draft standard -- double the number from 2007.

To date, the Wi-Fi Alliance has put the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED seal of approval -- indicating validated product interoperability -- on 325 products and is seeing strong numbers of 802.11n draft 2.0 products presented for testing. Wi-Fi users have responded to the widespread availability of Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11n draft 2.0 products with unprecedented enthusiasm. ABI Research forecasts that by 2013, more than 90 percent of Wi-Fi products will support 802.11n, underscoring the tremendous benefits of advanced Wi-Fi technology and the importance of interoperability certification in delivering the best user experience.

The products which have been Wi-Fi CERTIFIED to date in the program span both traditional PC networking gear and consumer electronics. Televisions, media servers, and gaming devices are among the products certified in the first year, and nearly half of the products also support Wi-Fi Protected Setup(TM), which eases the process of configuring and protecting a home Wi-Fi network. Enterprise network managers can now choose from more 180 Wi-Fi CERTIFIED laptops, adapter cards, and networking solutions that include 802.11n draft 2.0.

"Across the board, and with a range of consumer and enterprise devices, we are seeing a real hunger for all things 802.11n draft 2.0," said Edgar Figueroa, executive director of the Wi-Fi Alliance. "The standard has redefined the wireless experience, enabling streaming video, gaming, and other media throughout the home, while enabling advanced applications in enterprise networks. Wi-Fi CERTIFIED delivers a great user experience with a wide range of Wi-Fi products."

"Consumers will increasingly demand the performance boost that 802.11n draft 2.0 provides for data-intensive applications, including high definition video." said Phil Solis, principal analyst at ABI Research. "Acceptance by enterprise customers will catch up to that of consumers this year due to the maturity of the technology and the increased availability of enterprise-grade Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11n draft 2.0 products over the last year."

Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11n draft 2.0 products have been tested for interoperability across vendors, adherence to WPA2(TM) (Wi-Fi Protected Access) security protocols, and backward compatibility with more than 4,500 Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11 a/b/g products. Products based on the IEEE 802.11n draft 2.0 deliver up to five times the throughput and up to twice the range of those based on previous standards, enabling a wide range of content-rich applications, and delivering those applications over a larger footprint. The certification program also includes WMM(R) (Wi-Fi Multimedia) quality of service, which helps deliver the best user experience with applications such as voice, video and gaming.

With a rapidly increasing number of draft-based products entering the market, the Wi-Fi Alliance began certifying products ahead of the final IEEE 802.11n standard to help ensure interoperability and the best user experience. The Wi-Fi Alliance plans to certify products based on the final version of the 802.11n standard once finalized by the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers).

"With so many companies now bringing Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11n draft 2.0 products to the market, and in light of the heavy demand for the advanced technology, it is clear that the Wi-Fi Alliance made the right decision at the right time. Our decision gave users confidence and drove growth in the market," Figueroa said.

A list of all Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11n draft 2.0 products and free white papers on 802.11n technology are available at http://www.wi-fi.org/.

About the Wi-Fi Alliance

The Wi-Fi Alliance is a global, non-profit industry association of more than 300 member companies devoted to promoting the growth of wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs). With the aim of enhancing the user experience for wireless portable, mobile, and home entertainment devices, the Wi-Fi Alliance's testing and certification programs help ensure the interoperability of WLAN products based on the IEEE 802.11 specification. Since the introduction of the Wi-Fi Alliance's certification program in March 2000, more than 4,500 products have been designated as Wi-Fi CERTIFIED(TM), encouraging the expanded use of Wi-Fi products and services across the consumer and enterprise markets.

Wi-Fi(R), Wi-Fi Alliance(R), WMM(R), the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED logo, the Wi-Fi logo, and the Wi-Fi ZONE logo are registered trademarks of the Wi-Fi Alliance; Wi-Fi CERTIFIED(TM), Wi-Fi Protected Setup(TM), Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA)(TM), Wi-Fi Multimedia(TM), and the Wi-Fi Alliance logo are trademarks of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

Wi-Fi Alliance

CONTACT: Michael Diamond of Edelman, +1-650-762-2959,[email protected], for Wi-Fi Alliance

Web site: http://www.wi-fi.org/