Microsoft Corp., the software giant that has taken over the computer and video game markets, now wants to become a major player in the $1.4 billion home networking industry.

On July 11, the Redmond, Wash., corporation launched its new line of routers, which will allow consumers to connect together their digital devices together and link them to the Internet. The routers will link PCs to game consoles, TVs and other household devices so a family can share a high-speed Internet connection.

According to a July 11 Business Week article, Microsoft plans to compete with two of the home-networking leaders, Linksys and Netgear, by charging about $250 for a wireless broadband router, and then bundling it with its high-speed MSN service.Microsoft Corp. plans to offer home-networking kits for both wired and wireless connections.