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Cisco to buy Aironet in wireless network bid

The networking giant says it will purchase the wireless product maker for approximately $799 million, in its continuing bid to deliver wireless networks to mobile businesses.

Networking giant Cisco Systems today said it will purchase wireless product maker Aironet Wireless Communications for approximately $799 million, in its continuing bid to deliver wireless networks to mobile businesses.

Under the terms of the acquisition, each share, option, and warrant of Aironet Wireless Communications will be converted to 0.64 shares of Cisco common stock, the company said.

Cisco's acquisition of Aironet Wireless Communications will result in wireless technology that acts as an extension to existing wired local area networks (LANs), strengthening Cisco's position in the wireless marketplace, the company said.

Cisco has been delving into the wireless area for some time. The networking equipment giant has been looking to jump-start a nascent business by culling interest and support from a wide array of partners for a proposed technology standard, ideally helping in the development of new wireless networks.

Wireless LANs are in-building networks that communicate using radio technology and enable personal computer users to establish and maintain a wireless network connection anywhere throughout a building. For example, a person with a wireless-enabled PC can check email, browse the Internet, and access network resources--all while roaming throughout a building or campus.