Wi-Fi shows rapid growth

Sales of Wi-Fi networking gear were up significantly in 2003, driven mostly by consumer demand. The Wi-Fi gear market continued its rapid growth in 2003, led mostly by consumer holiday sales, but companies saw a slight shuffle in their market share rankings.

The overall revenue for Wi-Fi wireless networking gear was up more than 55 percent in the fourth quarter to $751.9m (£403.29m), Synergy Research Group said in a report on Tuesday. Revenue was up about 40 percent, to $2.5bn, for the year. The consumer sector drove the overall market, increasing about 74 percent in the fourth quarter to $517.6m and up 66 percent to $1.6bn for the year. The enterprise, or large-business, segment also was up significantly -- about 26 percent to $234.3m for the quarter and about 9 percent to $869.7m for the year. The consumer market has largely driven Wi-Fi sales growth for several quarters. The enterprise market has been slower to install wireless networks because of security and cost concerns. Still, there are indications that large businesses are beginning to use more Wi-Fi equipment.

The fourth quarter is generally a slower selling period for the corporate segment, while it is a prime time for consumers because of holiday deals, said Aaron Vance, an analyst with Synergy Research.

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News source: ZDNet UK

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