TMIS eNewsletter

       Fall Issue     September 2003
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Tools for efficiency — portable computing devices and other products to fit the needs of the technical communicator, business person, author, artist and consultant.

As I survey the current economic scene, I am getting excited by our century's emerging trends. Not the ones that got us into the mess, but the ones that promise to lead us out of it.

Modern road warriors faced with a very basic dilemma of how to satisfy the expectation of bosses, coworkers and customers to give prompt email response are driving demand for wireless fidelity (WiFi) devices and the "hot spots" to access them in. Manufacturers continue to push their embedded WiFi products on the client side, and service providers are pushed to evolve wireless switching technology on the infrastructure side. Public wireless LAN (WLAN) hot spots increased from 1,200 in 2001 to over 71,000 in 2003, and there are still not enough to meet users needs. There are 9.3 million hot spot users worldwide, and 4.7 million are in North America alone. The information laid out in the following surveys and reports is astounding, but also emphasizes the challenge of crafting a successful business model. Viewed by themselves, hot spots don’t generate profit, but as part of a larger business model they do. More companies will continue to install WLANs for their internal needs, and then also sell access to virtual LAN segments to offset costs.

Global standards for communication technology is crucial. Will the current build-out of 3G networks capture enough customers to make economic sense if the same customer base migrates to using hot spots? Analysts predict that over time, enough customers will exist in the market to make multiple wireless offerings both feasible and profitable. Can wireless providers continue to increase their market base in spite of the sluggish economy? Will the costs involved in setting up a basic WLAN prove too great a barrier for wider acceptance? As manufacturers continue to make embedded WiFi standard feature in devices, the cost will become transparent to the end user. Please explore these issues in our selections below.

An inspiring world view of how satellite technology can serve the broadband needs worldwide was discussed at an historic first gathering of satellite industry CEOs in Paris this month. Their consensus is that satellites are an essential component for world governments in bridging the "digital divide." Their efforts are aimed at getting governments to support satellite solutions that will enable users to access leading edge communications irrespective of location. And we have one piece highlighting the work of a national nonprofit agency based in Seattle, Community Voice Mail (CVM), that impowers people in crisis and transition by providing a crucial bridge back to a more stable life. In these times, access to a telephone is indeed a necessary tool for survival.

I am grateful to be in a collaborative business with many talented and skilled professionals. Additional feedback and recommendations for our products and services at TM Information Services are always welcome.

- Mary M. McLaughlin

In this Issue:
From the Front Page of TMIS News
From Thunder Mountain the On-Line Store

Discount Coupon - Thank You for Shopping!

From the Front Page of TMIS News <Top>
Click on links below to read Full Stories

Road Warriors Worldwide Say Wireless Computing Technology is Becoming Crucial to Business
Santa Clara, California

Business travelers view wireless computing technology as a business necessity only a year after "hotspots" -- places where people can tap into a wireless Internet connection with their notebook PCs -- became available in cafes, hotels and airports. Today, there are approximately 20,000 hotspots worldwide, a number expected to grow sixfold by 2005. According to an international survey of business travelers released on September 9 by Intel Corporation, 71 percent of road warriors are convinced that Wi-Fi -- short for wireless fidelity -- will enable business travelers to seize a communications advantage over their competition. While only one in ten road warriors has tried Wi-Fi, nearly 90 percent see wireless computing in their future. A third of Asian road warriors said they plan to try Wi-Fi within the next three to six months.

Full Story

Embedded Wi-Fi and Wireless Switching Promise to Further Facilitate Business WLAN Growth
Scottsdale, Arizona

Intel's aggressive push of Centrino on the client side and the emergence of wireless switching on the infrastructure side are the two major forces transforming the business Wi-Fi market in 2003, reports In-Stat/MDR. The high-tech market research firm expects that 16 million notebook PCs with embedded Wi-Fi will ship to businesses this year, and that by 2005, Wi-Fi will be included in 95% of notebooks as a standard feature. "This anticipated rush of Wi-Fi clients has sparked an influx of vendors eager to take part in building out infrastructure needed to support the growing number of Wi-Fi end users," said Gemma Paulo, a senior analyst with In-Stat/MDR. The "AP/Switch" architecture has been introduced by start-ups and some traditional WLAN hardware vendors as a way to ease the management, security, and configuration issues of large-scale WLAN roll-outs.

"The Wi-Fi business market is entering a new stage, one which promises to bring serious roll-outs to horizontal businesses, not just to the tried and true verticals of education, healthcare and retail," said Paulo. Certainly, the growth from these verticals continues to drive the majority of large roll-outs. But, with laptops growing so fast across the business space, and with the majority of laptops rolling out with Wi-Fi as a standard feature by 2005, the growth of Wi-Fi clients is practically assured. Certainly, the infrastructure market will evolve over the next 2-3 years, as end users demand those solutions that best simplify installation, improve performance, and enhance and simplify security and management.
Full Story

Analysts Project More Than 71,000 Public Wireless LAN Hot Spots in 2003
Stamford, Connecticut

The number of public wireless LAN (WLAN) hot spots has risen from just over 1,200 in 2001 to more than 71,000 in 2003, but there are still not enough hot spot locations to meet user needs, according to Gartner Inc. (NYSE: IT and ITB). The number of WLAN hot spot users is forecast to reach 9.3 million users worldwide in 2003, up from 2.5 million users in 2002. North America will account for 4.7 million users in 2003, followed by Asia/Pacific with 2.7 million users and Europe with 1.7 million WLAN hot spot users.
Full Story

Wi-Fi and 3G Can Coexist, Bring More Consumers into the Mobile World
Oyster Bay, New York

Migrating today's wireless consumer to adopt data-enabled solutions has become the quest that mobile operators, OEMs, and others have taken up with increasing intensity. 3G networks, which have yet to launch in earnest, have promised to answer that call, but hotspots, or Wi-Fi applications, are currently providing plausible solutions for the experienced wireless user. The looming question for equipment makers and other players in this market is: can they coexist peacefully, acquire customers, and still be profitable?
Full Story

Global WLAN Service Revenues to Reach $4.75 Billion by 2007
Boston, Massachussets

Amidst all the turmoil over the past few years in the telecom industry, one segment has continued to thrive and show promise in the wireless industry, specifically wireless local area networks (WLANs) and Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi). 802.11b or Wi-Fi as it's more commonly known has been gaining acceptance in three specific segments, namely the enterprise, public and home networking markets. Pioneer Consulting believes that Wi-Fi technology will continue to increase its market share over its wired counterparts due to an ever-increasing mobile workforce along with the continued growth of hot spots as end-user demand for unwired Internet connectivity increases worldwide.
Full Story

Businesses Embracing Wireless LANs to Increase Business Efficiencies
Bedford, New Hampshire

As low prices and wireless connectivity continue to drive the trend in the midmarket toward mobile PCs, 60 percent of midsize businesses (MSBs) in North America will deploy wireless LANs (WLANs) within their premises by the end of 2003, according to Gartner Inc. (NYSE: IT and ITB). WLANs will become a critical component for those seeking to improve business efficiencies in a wide variety of processes, including inventory, shipping and manufacturing.

"Supporting the access requirements of mobile workers is becoming a serious concern for midsize businesses" said Jim Browning, vice president and research director for Gartner. "Demand for wireless Internet access in the home, the office and in public places is growing rapidly, while PC vendors are packaging wireless capability in their products. These factors are driving the adoption of next-generation wireless solutions in midsize businesses."
Full Story

Historic First Gathering of Satellite Chief Executives Focuses on the Role of Satellites in Closing the Digital Divide

Convened by ESOA and the SIA, chief executives and senior representatives from member satellite operators met in Paris on September 8 to discuss the critical role satellites can play in meeting the needs of the Information Society.

This first session of the two associations, whose member operators reach the four corners of the globe, focussed on the importance of building a clear understanding amongst governments and stakeholders of how satellites can serve the broadband needs of businesses, individuals and communities in developing and developed nations. Broadband objectives in different countries that call for universal access to high-speed networks within the next five years can only be met if satellites are a contributing technology, particularly for rural communities and for developing countries.
Full Story

Community Voice Mail Empowers People in Crisis and Transition
Seattle, Washington

Community Voice Mail empowers people in crisis and transition by distributing free, 24-hour personalized voice mail access nationwide -- directly linking individuals to jobs, housing and stability.

Headquartered in Seattle, WA, the CVM network stretches across 37 U.S. cities. In 2002, CVM helped over 23,000 people reconnect to employment, a place to live, and safety from domestic abuse. Funded entirely by grants and donations, Community Voice Mail provides a crucial bridge back to a more stable life by reconnecting people in crisis with the tangible tool they need to succeed -- a constant telephone number.
Full Story

Government Executives Making Progress in Service Delivery, but Say More Needs to Be Done
Washington, DC

The vast majority of government executives believe their agencies are not yet consistently delivering "superior customer service," although they identify it as a top priority, according to a global study released in July by Accenture. Although 92 percent of government executives said it was "important or very important" to provide superior service, more than 90 percent of the executives who participated in the study said their agencies do not yet deliver "superior service." Additionally, only 28 percent of respondents said their agencies are effective today at delivering services through the channels their customers prefer.
Full Story

Pharos Launches Smart Navigator, the First Integrated GPS Guide, Real-Time Traffic Advisor and Points-of-Interest Finder for Mobile Devices
Torrance, California

Users of Windows Mobile-based Pocket PC users can wirelessly access location-based services to find destinations, save driving time and enhance their over-the-road travel safety, improving mobility across America

Pharos Science & Applications Inc., a leading provider of portable GPS navigation and location-based services, is introducing Smart Navigator, the first Web-based service to combine GPS navigation, real-time traffic and dynamic points-of-interest lookup for users of Windows Mobile-based Pocket PCs as well as Pocket PCs with integrated phone capabilities. To mark the launch of Smart Navigator, Pharos is offering the service for free through the end of 2003.
Full Story

From Thunder Mountain the On-Line Store <Top>

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