US Robotics shows good performance

Bandwidth is the name of the game, as US Robotics banks on its 100Mbits/s wireless networking products to boost its wireless market share in the Middle East.

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By  Paul Barthram Published  January 21, 2004

Bandwidth is the name of the game, as US Robotics banks on its 100Mbits/s wireless networking products to boost its wireless market share in the Middle East. While adoption for wireless technologies has met some resistance in the Middle East, US Robotics [USR] has reported good growth, and is planning to woo the market in 2004 with its high-bandwidth wireless networking product portfolio, which offers users speeds of up to 100Mbit/s. “USR’s Turbo range is the fastest existing Wi-Fi range today, and the first ever to be approved by the local ISP in the UAE,” says Peter Blampied, director of sales, US Robotics EMEA. The technology for wireless high-speed access may have finally arrived, but it will depend on having all the network equipment 100 Mbits/s compliant to guarantee this, which incidentally if you buy the entire range from USR you’ll have. Whereas this might alienate some of the competition, by setting the standard, USR are making leaps and bounds in the wireless field. The USR range of wireless products, launched in 2003, contributed 13% of the company’s sales for the first half of 2003, with sales fuelled by a growing need for flexibility and cost reduction. While maintaining the same level of high speed Internet access for small to medium office users in the region. “In the Middle East alone, the growth of our wireless product line more than doubled in the second half of last year. We expect our wireless product sales to continue to increase in the region, and this will be fuelled by a growing number of businesses adopting hotspots and wireless Internet access as a strategy for attracting customers. Faster speeds, greater compatibility with standards, as well as enhanced security features will underpin the growth in wireless connectivity in this region,” adds Blampied. Blampied says that despite the slow start to the year for technology companies, USR scored well as a result of the market penetration efforts by its channel partners. “Despite the slow start to the year, and the challenges that confronted the technology industry, our distribution partners responded quickly and efficiently to our marketing schemes, and managed to drive our business growth to very high and competitive levels,” he comments. So with a strong performance from its channel in 2003, what can the Middle East channel hope for in terms of developing the market this year? Blampied believes market education is the key, and developing service skills for wireless in the channel. “Customers and potential customers expect a certain level of care and support from vendors, especially in this industry — and we pride ourselves on that service. For 2004 we plan to include a number of seminars around the region, training programmes, and channel service training programmes,” he concludes.

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