No one has ever reportedly died from not being presented with a roundup of news in the networking market, but we're not about to risk it, so here's what's happened in the last seven days:
Rugged AP for outdoor WiFi
Aruba has introduced a rugged dual-radio 802.11a+b/g access point, aimed at emerging needs for outdoor wireless LAN coverage and building-to-building connections.
"It's not just a standard AP in a box," said David Callisch, Aruba's comms director. "It's hardened for outdoors, with a heater and a fan, and you can add a directional or high-gain antenna." He said it has already been picked up by users with large sites to cover, such as Bristol Airport.
Called the Aruba 80 and due in June, the $1,995 device is not cheap. It includes two radios, though, so one can serve as a backhaul or bridge while the other provides network access for devices such as PCs, PDAs and voice-over-WiFi phones.
Netgear uses seven aerials for longer range
Netgear is using a variant on the MIMO - multiple input multiple output - theme in its latest RangeMax WLAN products. Leading the line-up, the WPN824 access point is based on technology from Video54, and features seven internal aerials arranged in a circle.
"The smart antenna in the base station finds the best path to the client PC," said Netgear channel manager Peter Air. He claimed that this can give ten times the range of standard 802.11g, when used with a RangeMax adapter on the client.
At present, the seven-sector antenna is only used in Netgear's access points for the home and small office market, but Air said that the company plans to build it into enterprise-class APs too.
I was wrong, admits Openzone boss
Usage of BT Openzone's public wireless hotspots has jumped around 300 percent overall since subscription prices were cut earlier this year, according to Chris Clark, the company's CEO.
Openzone fought long and hard to avoid reducing its prices, claiming that there were other, more important, reasons why people weren't using hotspots, but Clark now admits that was a mistake: "I was totally wrong when I said a year ago that pricing wasn't a factor," he said.
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