by September 4, 2000 0 comments
Year Winner
2000 D-Link
1999 US Robotics
1998 US Robotics
1997 Motorola
1996 Motorola
1995 Multitech
1994 Multitech
1993 Multitech
1992 Multitech
1991 Multitech
1990 Multitech

The first time we wanted to buy a modem for PCQ Labs, we’d
sanctioned around Rs 80,000 per piece. Unfortunately, the one we wanted to buy
at that time cost around Rs 120,000. Today, you wouldn’t require a capital
sanction to buy one. You can pick one up from the market for around Rs 3,000.
The modem market has become saturated, with vendors trying to outsell each other
with a price advantage.

Last year, seven contenders had managed to reach the User’s
Choice Club. This year, three of these still remain, and a new brand makes its
entry at number four. Winner of the last two years–US Robotics–has dropped
down to number three this time. The possible cause is stiff competition in
pricing. Strangely, the OEM for the winner and runner up this year–D-Link and
GVC respectively–is the same, and yet, there’s a vast difference between
their scores. In a single year, D-Link has grabbed the consumer’s mindshare
and reached top position from last year’s number five.

Modems

User’s Choice Club  UPI
D-Link 100
GVC 68
US Robotics 53
Dax 37

Today, modems aren’t the only mode of data communication.
ISDN has relieved a lot of people of the pains of poor speeds and bad connects
given by analog modems. However, ISDN hasn’t become affordable for single
users yet. So, modems seem to be the only choice left to home users. With the
Internet having gained so much popularity, the market for analog modems is in
full swing. Today, you can’t think of buying a new PC without an accompanying
modem. The prime reason for choosing a modem remains quality, followed closely
by price.

Like a lot of other products, D-Link also draws maximum
support from the south in the corporate world. However, it needs to work on
corporate markets in the north and the west. Household preferences for D-Link
remain similar across all regions.

Modems will continue to reign the market as the most cost-effective
communication device, till such time that the prices for other options come
down. That doesn’t seem too likely to happen in the next year. But then, with
last year’s winners list getting toppled over completely, you never know. Dial
in next year to find out.

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