[Correction: The story was originally published with an incorrect quote, which has now been corrected. - Editor]
Let it never be said that Microsoft is afraid of appearing the copycat. The company has innovated yet again by launching a line of Microsoft-branded 802.11b base stations and wireless cards. Apple launched this segment of the market in 1999 when it shipped the iBook, the first Apple portable with built-in 802.11b support. According to an article from NewsFactor, Microsoft is choosing to do this because its customers think setting up a wireless network is too hard. From the article:
Microsoftis move to label its own wireless networking packages has earned a positive response from some analysts. "People like Microsoft buying other companiesi products and selling them under its own label," Aberdeen Group analyst Isaac Ro told NewsFactor.
The software giant is betting on the notion that many home computer users have resisted wireless networking until now because of a perception that they would have trouble configuring the hardware -- a pervasive problem with DSL and cable Internet connections a couple of years ago.
"The process of setting up a wireless network has simply been too complex for the people looking to share their broadband Internet connection," said Lisa Brummel, corporate vice president for the Microsoft Home Products Division.
Microsoftis base station is being priced at US$149.95, about half the price of Appleis branded base station. The companyis various network cards are being priced at US$79.95, compared to US$99.00 for Appleis AirPort card. You can find more in the full article at Yahoo!is Web site.