Hayes Microcomputer has announced that it plans to release a 56kbps modem in 1997. Competitor US Robotics is also believed to be close to launching a 56kbps product.
The new speed is almost twice as fast as the fastest modems currently on the market. However, it will only apply to the downstream - data which comes from the Internet to the user. The upstream will remain at 33.6kbps, the current maximum.
Rockwell International, which manufactures the chips used in many modems, has also pledged to support the new standard. Based on past modem performance trends, we can expect 56kbps to become the standard modem speed within 18 months.
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