Despite all the talk about broadband, most Web users are still connecting at less than 56 kbps, and that fact will probably remain true for some time. One study indicates that only 27 percent of the U.S. has access to cable modem or DSL service. Technical enhancements for analog modems, however, are coming because the V.92 modem standard was approved this month by the International Telecommunications Union.
“Handshake” times will halve. Maximum upstream data-transmission speeds will increase from 33.6 kbps to 48 kbps and call-waiting features will allow short phone calls without breaking the Internet connection. Lucent Technologies Microelectronics Group, Conexant, PCtel and Cisco all say they will support V.92.
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