HANOVER, Germany — Increasing complexity and stronger security is making it harder for new wireless computer networking products to hook up with each other, an industry group promoting the technology said Thursday at the CeBIT tech fair.
The Wi-Fi Alliance said that 22 percent of the devices — such as wireless networking cards for computers, access ports and printer servers — submitted for testing at its four partner laboratories failed to work on a network on the first try.
The group certifies Wi-Fi equipment in an attempt to help the technology grow, by sparing consumers hair-pulling experiences as they try to use Wi-Fi-enabled laptops or handheld computers to wirelessly surf the Web at coffee shops and airports. The Wi-Fi Alliance has certified 1,100 devices since 2000.
"As equipment becomes more advanced, we're actually seeing interoperability failures go up," said Brian Grimm, marketing director for the alliance, which is based in Mountain View, Calif.
Wi-Fi, short for Wireless Fidelity, uses radio signals to share broadband Internet connections within a few hundred feet. The alliance, whose over 200 partners include Microsoft, Intel, Dell, Philips, Sony, Texas Instruments, Nokia, and Cisco Systems, estimates there are between 25,000 and 30,000 public Wi-Fi spots worldwide.
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