Pioneers promise to revolutionise wireless industry whilst SMS gets touchy-feelie

18 Aug 2003

California-based Airgo Networks, a secretive Silicon Valley enterprise made up of self-styled ‘wireless pioneers’, is to begin distributing technology that it claims will revolutionise wireless communications, according to Reuters. The company is offering sample versions of its 802.11 short range radio antenna chips to equipment manufacturers on the promise that the new technology will boost the speed, range and reliability of wireless devices indoors and over short distances. It also boasts that the new system can transmit high definition televison signals inside homes and improve indoor mobile telephone reception. Airgo says that it has contracted an unnamed Taiwanese manufacturer to deliver the new chipsets commercially by the end of the year and hinted that it has inked deals to sell the hardware to a number of personal computer manufacturers, network equipment providers and at least one consumer electronics giant.

BT Exact, the R&D business of the UK’s BT Group, has announced that it has developed new technology that takes SMS communication to the level where ‘actual emotions can be conveyed in a physical and tactile way’. The new system, which does not yet have a commercial launch date, involves a link-up between phones and interactive toys, allowing the SMS’ sentiment to be displayed through the toy’s actions. BT claims that it is collaborating with a number of major toy manufacturers and testing the system on some of their most popular toys. Whilst BT’s aim is to make SMS more personable and fun, the company is keen to point out the possibilities for corporate users, citing the development of an executive toy that will give out physical reminders of diary dates. Additionally, the new technology could bring a whole new meaning to the term ‘phone sex’, though BT were unavailable for comment on a such a suggestion.

United Kingdom