By the numbers

WLAN? Bluetooth? 802.11a or 802.11g? These terms will likely become part of the lexicon of even novice IT users within a handful of years.

Gartner Inc. of Stamford, Conn., recently issued estimates about the spread of wireless technologies that are fairly staggering given the relatively light adoption so far.
Consider just three predictions:
  • By year's end, there will be more than 500 million data-enabled mobile handsets in use worldwide.

  • By 2005, governments at all levels will be able to use increasingly accurate location technologies, combined with data communications, to provide a variety of government functions and services.

  • By 2007, more than 60 percent of 15- to 50-year-olds in Europe and the United States will carry or wear a wireless device at least six hours a day; by 2010, more than 75 percent will.

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