Major Shift in Embedded Wi-Fi Market

One of the hottest technology markets, Wireless LAN (WLAN), or Wi-Fi, is undergoing a fundamental shift, according to In-Stat/MDR. The high-tech market research firm reports that in 2003 removable Wi-Fi PC card adapters were displaced as the most popular Wi-Fi adapter by embedded Mini PCI card adapters.

“The Wi-Fi Mini PCI card represented 49.1% of the Wi-Fi adapters shipped, and enabled most of the Wi-Fi mobile PCs (e.g., notebook and tablet PCs) in 2003,” said In-Stat/MDR analyst Norm Bogen. “Conversely, PC cards held a quickly eroding 38.8% market share in 2003 after dominating the market with a 58.3% market share in 2002.” In-Stat/MDR expects that the Wi-Fi Mini PCI card will continue to capture an increasing percentage of the total Wi-Fi adapter market over the next five years.

A recent report from In-Stat/MDR also reveals the following:

* The market for embedded Wi-Fi clients (including mobile PCs, PDAs and phones) will grow at a 66.2% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) to 226.0 million units shipped in 2008.

* After five years of healthy growth since its mainstream commercialization, the worldwide Wi-Fi hardware market (i.e., network infrastructure and adapters) finally surpassed $1.0 billion in (4Q 2003) quarterly revenues.

* There has been a significant growth in Wi-Fi-enabled notebook PCs, as 55.0% of the 32.1 million notebook PCs shipped in 2003 contained embedded Wi-Fi adapters.

The report, “Wi-Fi Inside: The Embedded Wi-Fi Paradigm” contains analysis and forecasts of the worldwide Wi-Fi market from 2003-2008. The report also includes analysis of products and strategies of major vendors.


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