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Vidéotron expands wireless service, introduces wireless router for home networks to support mobility and Internet sharing

Montreal, July 7, 2004 – Vidéotron is expanding its presence in the wireless market with the introduction of a cable modem with integrated router and wireless adapters for home networks. Subscribers to Vidéotron’s High-Speed and Extreme High-Speed Internet access services can now cut the cost of home computing by creating a highspeed wireless home network through which several computers can share a single Internet connection and use a shared printer or other peripherals. A laptop can be moved anywhere in the home and stay connected to the network.

According to a recent study, 35% of computer-owning North American households have more than one, and the proportion is expected to increase to 50% by 2007. In-Stat/MDR reports that more than 22.7 million network cards and wireless access points were delivered in 2003, a 214% increase over the 7.2 million units delivered in 2002. There was also a significant increase in sales of laptop computers with bundled wireless networking software.

“This means there is a growing need in many households for home networks that let family members share an Internet connection, play games on a network, and share resources such as a printer, other peripherals and video downloads,” said Stéphane Gendron, Senior Director, Marketing, Internet Products, with Vidéotron. “Today’s announcement is another step in our strategy of offering fast, reliable and secure Internet solutions that meet our customers’ needs, whether they are wired or using a wireless modem/router.”

A wireless home network reduces the cost of home computer services. The wireless broadband router splits one Internet connection among all the computers in the home that are equipped with a wireless network adapter, avoiding indoor wiring costs. Once the computers are linked to the router, they can also communicate with each other and share files and resources. All the computers can send files to a shared printer anywhere in the home, within a radius of up to 300 meters. The technology also provides two security barriers against unwanted intrusions: encryption of transmitted data and a builtin firewall to protect the system against hackers.

Vidéotron, one of the first ISPs in North America to offer high-speed Internet access, boasts one of the most interconnected networks on the continent, with 35,000 kilometres of coaxial and fibre-optic cable. Vidéotron’s high-speed service is up to 70 times faster than a 56 kbps dial-up modem and up to 1.36 times faster than a 3 mbps high-speed DSL modem. To stay at the forefront, Vidéotron is investing nearly $40 million in its twoway broadband network and Internet infrastructure this year.

Vidéotron ltée (www.videotron.com), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Quebecor Media Inc., is an integrated communications company engaged in cable television, interactive multimedia development and Internet access services. Vidéotron is a leader in new technologies with its illico interactive television system and its broadband network, which supports high-speed cable Internet access, analog and digital cable television, and other services. Vidéotron serves 1,437,000 cable television customers in Québec; including over 273,000 illico subscribers. Vidéotron is also the Québec leader in high-speed cable Internet access, with more than 460,000 subscribers to its cable modem and dial-up services.


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