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3Com set to produce cable modems

Having bought an equity stake in closely held cablem modem manufacturer Com21, network equipment vendor 3Com is ready to enter the market for high-speed network access devices.

Having bought an equity stake in closely held cablem modem manufacturer Com21, network equipment vendor 3Com is ready to enter the market for high-speed network access devices.

Terms of 3Com's investment in Com21 were not disclosed, according to a Bloomberg news report.

3Com made its announcement two days after Intel canceled plans to manufacture cable modems in favor of collaborating with other companies to create standards for the fledgling cable modem industry. Cable modems run over cable television lines to provide access to the Internet and online services that is several hundred times faster than conventional modems running over phone lines.

3Com now intends to license Com21's technology and manufacture the devices itself in competition with Motorola, General Instrument, Hewlett-Packard, and Cisco. Analysts expects the cable modem business to boom this year. Motorola alone will provide as many as 200,000 modems to Tele-Communications for its @Home service.

Related stories:
Intel becomes cable modem impresario
Motorola, Sun team for fast Net access
Boston cable-modem test planned
Cable modems are wave of the future