Last year's introduction of the newest version of the wireless standard, 802.11a, maximum transfer speeds reached 74Mbps. However, it's still not quite as popular as its predecessor, 802.11b, because it is still very new technology that is high priced. Another thing is that the devices built around the new 802.11a standard is notcompatible with the older 802.11b standard. This is really unfortunate because home users, as well as businesses, who have invested a considerable amount of time and money on a 802.11b solution will not be able to benefit from the increased speed.
One of the most widely used solutions for wireless networking comes from Belkin. On October 23, 2001, Belkin, the leading manufacturer of computer peripherals and accessories, launched five new wireless networking devices built around the 802.11b standard that are interoperable with all 802.11b-compliant wireless devices. Belkin's line of wireless networking devices are perfect for both existing 802.11b users and new users looking for an affordable wireless networking solution. Once setup, users have the ability to browse the Internet, check e-mail, share files and peripherals, as well as Internet connection without the use of network cabling.
Belkin's complete line offers 11Mbps data transfer rates, data and network security for users by providing 64/128-bit WEP data encryption, which keeps data private by using encryption keys known only to the network users to scramble the data being sent over the air and giving users peace of mind, and easy-to-use Belkin SOHO Networking Software that guides users through the configuration process of their Windows-based PC for networking.
In the next article, we'll take a look at some of the considerations that should be looked at to determine how you should go about setting up your wireless network.