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ABOUT HOMEPNA

The HomePNA is a group of more than 130 companies seeking to develop specifications for interoperable, home-networked devices using existing phone wiring. The group was founded in June, 1998 by 11 companies (3Com, AMD, AT&T Wireless, Compaq, Conexant, Epigram, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Intel, Lucent Technologies, and Tut Systems). Toward the end of 1998 the group created a de facto industry standard when it published an easy-to-use, cost-effective, and proven 1 Mbps home phone-line networking technology as its 1.0 specification. The technology allows computers, peripherals, and other information appliances to connect with each other and the Internet without interrupting standard telephone service. Utilizing existing telephone wiring, it requires no costly or disruptive rewiring of the home. HomePNA members began producing compliant products in December, 1998. In December of 1999, the organization announced the release of its much-anticipated second-generation home phone-line networking technology (HomePNA 2.0). The new specification brings a faster 10 Mbps to phone-line networking, while at the same time maintaining backward compatibility with existing 1 Mbps HomePNA technology. The new technology uses selective portions of the 2 to 30 MHz frequency band to achieve these data rates. The technology foundation for the 10 Mbps HomePNA 2.0 standard is currently based on chipsets from a U.S.-based company called Broadcom Corporation.

In addition to increasing data speeds within the home, HomePNA is working to incorporate their technologies into a range of electronic appliances including: PCs, ADSL modems, cable modems, digital televisions, set-top boxes, and IP-based Web phones. Let's examine each component of a HomePNA-based network and see how they work together.


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