Instead of harping on about the 'digital home' concept, Netgear decided to talk about something a lot simpler at its CES press conference today. Patrick Lo, Founder of Netgear, began with his vision that "everyone on earth should be able to utilise the high speed internet to do whatever they want to."
We hoped Netgear would enthuse after last year's limp keynote, which only really yielded its EVA8000 HD Digital Entertainer with HDMI. This year it chose to focus on Wireless N and, while eschewing talk of the finalisation of 802.11n instead chose to blitz the awaiting journalists with a dual-band 2.4/5GHz Wireless N router, the WNDR3300RangeMax Dual Band Wireless-N Router among other new devices we've covered in more detail elsewhere. We've seen dual-band solutions before, but this is the first serious attempt at a consumer orientated device using the higher band.
All the announced wireless devices also have an easy setup one-touch button which works using the Wi-Fi Alliance's standard. Plug one of the bridges into your router, the other into your HD display or gaming console.
Vivek Pathela, vice president of Product Marketing at Netgear also introduced the WNHDE1115 Ghz Wireless-N HD Access Point/Bridge, a pair of bridges designed to integrate with any existing wired or wireless network and stream uninterrupted 1080p HD around your home.
The third element of Netgear's sell was the Ready NAS Duo network storage box, which will be available with various capacities. Using a Netgear patented system, X-RAID, the company says the Ready NAS Duo offers automated storage management.
"It's a consumer orientated NAS which will not fail. [It will] share any form of data with backup and drive failure," Pathela said. He demonstrated a drive being removed from the box, but didn't demonstrate it being put back in which could potentially cause an issue.
As seems to be de rigueur for corporate heads at this year's CES, Lo also stated Netgear's focus on the environment. "We also care about the earth. Back in 1997 we were the first in the industry to lead the change into [recycled packaging]. We started a revolution." Lo added that over 80 per cent of the company's packaging was now derived from recycled paper.