Diamond shoots for faster modems

Diamond Multimedia Systems Inc. is developing a technology to speed analog modems.

Diamond Multimedia Systems Inc. is developing a technology to speed analog modems.

Diamond this week debuted Shotgun, a technology the company said will double the connection rates of 56-Kbps modems by combining the bandwidth of two analog telephone lines. Diamond said the technology takes advantage of the two phone lines available in many households.

Shotgun-based devices will be able to achieve speeds as fast as 112 Kbps, according to Diamond. The company said Shotgun modems for Windows systems will arrive in the first quarter of 1997, and the company said it is reviewing whether to bring the architecture to the Mac.

Developed in conjunction with remote-access vendor Ascend Communications Inc. of Alameda, Calif., Shotgun taps Ascend's Multichannel Protocol Plus (MP+) technology, which combines two modem connections on the Internet service provider side, according to Diamond. MP+ is already supported in Ascend's line of MAX switches.

Shotgun will use a consumer's second phone line during peak Internet usage and drop the dual-line connection during times of lower Internet traffic, according to the company.

Diamond said Shotgun will reach ISDN speeds without requiring a special digital phone line and extra phone company fees. Many ISDN devices use a technique called MultiLink Point-to-Point Protocol, similar to MP+, to combine two B channels in order to achieve speeds of about 115 Kbps.

Diamond Multimedia Systems Inc. of Vancouver, Wash., can be reached at (360) 604-1400 or (800) 727-8772; fax (360) 604-1401; http://www.diamondmm.com.