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Uniden calls Buffalo into WLAN market

Uniden calls Buffalo into WLAN market

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Uniden Australia has branched out from its global cordless phone business and moved into the wireless networking market.

The local subsidiary launched Uniden's first WLAN products this month, manufactured by Japanese vendor Buffalo.

The Buffalo by Uniden range consists of six products at present, but the company will be looking at importing more from Buffalo's range of about 500 products in the future, said Uniden Australia marketing manager, Mark Willis.

Products available include the LinkStation, a 120GB networked-attached storage device, and AirStation, a wireless broadband router based on the 802.11g standard.

Uniden Australia's entry into the new market is all about growth, according to Willis.

"There's only so much market share in phones and UHF devices.

"The wireless LAN market is expected to double this year, so even if we get five to 10 per cent market share we're getting our foot in the door and building a good platform," he said.

Importing Buffalo products would differentiate Uniden's market offering from other WLAN players, according to Willis.

"The existing players have their own product range. So rather than sell theirs, we wanted our own quality range," he said.

All Buffalo products come with patented AirStation One-Touch Secure System (AOSS) technology, which configures connections and security levels to other AOSS devices.

Uniden plans to appoint a national sales manager to oversee the sales team dedicated to the WLAN portfolio. The company was also making a video on the benefits of AOSS technology, as well as comparison documents with other products as part of the sales/marketing effort, said Willis.

The Buffalo by Uniden products are already available through Harvey Norman, RetraVision and Good Guys stores.

Other Uniden subsidiaries will assess the Australian move before deciding to enter the WLAN market, said Willis. The Buffalo by Uniden brand will not be sold globally, however. Buffalo has its own presence in markets such as the US and Europe so should other Uniden subsidaries follow the Australian move, different partners may be required.


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