3Com killed off Audrey, its $500 Internet appliance after the company received more bad financial news Wednesday. 3Com CEO Bruce Claflin announced the move after reporting a larger-than-expected fourth-quarter loss. 3Com will also unplug its consumer appliance line, which includes Kerbango, an Internet radio. The Santa Clara, Calif., firm introduced Audrey last fall with a TV campaign in the 16 top markets via Lowe, Lintas, New York. Despite the push, 3Com had little success with the product.According to NPD Intelect, a Port Washington, N.Y., firm that measures retail sales, out of 85,000 Internet appliance sales in fourth quarter 2000, only about 120 were for Audrey. “It’s such a small number that they zero out in some months,” said George Meier, marketing director for NPD.
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