Proxim Brings 802.11g to the Enterprise

By Eric Griffith

January 28, 2003

The ORiNOCO line gets a price cut on two of its business-class access points at the same time Proxim announces an 802.11g upgrade kit, all in hopes of pushing high-speed 2.4GHz WLANs into offices.

In what the company calls "future-proofing" for the install base of its ORiNOCO AP-2000 Access Point, Proxim Corporation of Sunnyvale, CA, has reduced its price and introduced a upgrade for the slot-equipped access point so it can support 2.4GHz 802.11g wireless LANs.

The 802.11g draft-compliant ORiNOCO AP-2000 11g Kit will cost $149 MSRP and will be available early in the second quarter of 2003. That's significantly less than the already existing 5GHz 802.11a upgrade kit for the AP-2000, which goes for $249.

Georganne Benesch, vice president of product management at Proxim, says the price discrepancy is caused by a number of factors: "the chip is one part, the physical cost of molding is another. "G" is, from a market perspective, priced more aggressively."

The upgrade kits for the AP-2000 are PC Card based, and fit in one of the two slots in the unit. Because it has two slots, the AP-2000 can be configured for dual-band use, mixing 802.11a/g or 802.11a/b.

The AP-2000 access point will be dropping in price from $895 to $595 MSPR. The AP-2000 also supports 802.1X authentication, SNMP management, and has a range up to 1,750 feet.

The ORiNOCO AP-2500 Access Point, which has the same form factor as the AP-2000, will also have a price drop from $1095 to $795. It will eventually be able to take the 802.11g upgrade, once Proxim has finished some firmware and software modifications for it.

Why the significant price drop now? Purely competitive, according to Benesch: "A lot of enterprises are piloting wireless LANs and they want to deploy in a big way. We want them to have Proxim products and we want to motivate them to deploy now because it is cost effective. We want every enterprise to have 5000, not 500, nodes."



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