Wi-Fi phones are on your network, like it or not

    Date10 Dec 2004
    Posted ByJoe Shakespeare
    Wireless LAN-enabled mobile phones and handhelds are on the way, whether network administrators are ready for them or not.

    ABI Research raised its forecast for this year's shipments of wireless handsets in a new report, and predicted that Wi-Fi enabled phones are about to swamp the market, creating fresh complications for enterprises managing wireless LANs.

    A "somewhat more bullish economy" and the emergence of niche-oriented consumer handsets like Nokia's N-Gage are helping to create demand for next-generation wireless gadgets, ABI said. But the most significant trend for enterprises is the arrival of Wi-Fi phones from the likes of Motorola, HP and NEC, as well as a more general boom in Wi-Fi-enabled, data-oriented handhelds. These devices will see a huge increase in data and VoIP traffic on enterprise WLANs, ABI said - they will soon amount to double the number of Wi-Fi networking chipsets, such as those found in laptops.

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