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Mainstream Wireless LAN and Mobility Apps

According to a new market study by Infonetics Research, by 2011 overall 3G data service adoption across small, medium, and large organizations in North America will reach 17 percent, and adoption of mobile WiMAX will reach 11 percent.

The study entitled "User Plans for Wireless LANs and Mobility" also shows that wireless LANs will be adopted by 73 percent of North American organizations by 2011, and wireless mesh by 11 percent.

"Mobility is increasingly viewed by user organizations as a fundamental part of their communications strategy and the wireless networks or services they use are an intrinsic part of the overall network," said Richard Webb, wireless analyst at Infonetics Research, and lead author of the report. "Wireless is no longer seen as a separate overlaid and unmanaged wild frontier."

"The breadth and penetration of wireless LAN and mobile data applications grows between now and 2009," added Webb. "Notable amongst these are videoconferencing (currently used by 25 percent of respondents in 2007, growing to 34 percent in 2009), video surveillance (24 percent to 32 percent) and wireless VoIP (18 to 29 percent). Organizations are definitely using their wireless networks and services for more than email and web browsing."

The Infonetics study highlights include:

- Expenditures for WLAN access points and switches drop by 2009, while expenditures on 3G and WiMAX services increase, as mobility beyond the organization's campus grows in importance.

- Laptops are by far the most popular device for accessing the WLAN, but Wi-Fi VoIP handsets, especially dual-mode WiFi/cellular handsets, show strong growth.

- The use of VoIP over wireless LAN doubles from 12 percent in 2007 to 25 percent by 2009; hosted VoIP and VoIP over cellular also exhibit healthy growth from modest beginnings.

- There is a shift away from distributed to centralized intelligence in WLAN architecture; respondents prefer the ability to centrally view and manage their wireless networks.

- 49 percent have a policy defining how employees use WLAN, WiMAX, or 2.5G/3G data services; security and personal usage top the list of criteria defined by such policies.

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