Despite the continuing industry wrangling over standards for 56Kbps modems, more products are hitting the market from both camps.
Ascend Communications, which backs the Rockwell-Lucent K56Flex specification for 56Kbps technology, this week became one of the first companies to ship modules for central site remote access servers.
Meanwhile, Global Village said it will ship two PC modems next month, based on US Robotics' would-be standard, known as X2. These will cost about #150 and will come with the supplier's Faxworks and Global Transfer Lite software.
Both companies, like most modem makers, are seeking to reassure customers that they will not be stranded if they choose the wrong 56Kbps technology. Ascend has based its Series56 family of digital modems - which work with its Max and Max TNT remote access servers - on digital signal processors. This means the product can be upgraded via a simple software download should the standard specification change, said vice president Kurt Bauer.
Global Village has included 4Mbytes of flash Rom in its internal and external modems, which it said will ensure that customers can upgrade to future technologies,including an alternative 56Kbps design.
The Ascend product, targeted primarily at Internet service providers and carriers, will come in configurations of eight, 12, 16 or 48 modems and will work with all four models in the Max Wan access switch range.
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