Motorola this week unveiled an Internet access device that combines WiMax, Wi-Fi, Ethernet, VoIP, and ATA for carriers that are seeing a market for multi-service networking.
The Motorola wi4 WiMa CPEi 775 will be available only to carriers initially and will not be offered for retail markets.
Unveiled Tuesday, the device is available immediately for shipment to carriers in an ultra thin form factor in a variety of colors. The second generation CPEi 775 device incorporates adaptive switching techniques, making for easy installation, because it does not need to be rotated for optimal signal strength.
"As mobile WiMax networks proliferate globally, service providers are looking for ways to leverage the speed and performance of WiMax for more advanced services," said Charles Riggle of Motorola Home & Networks Mobility unit, in a statement. "It takes considerable know-how to put two different radio technologies together in a single package with internal antennas and not suffer from interference or degraded throughput." Riggle is senior director of strategy and business development of WiMax Devices at the Motorola unit.
Combination WiMax-Wi-Fi modems are beginning to make their appearance as WiMax deployments begin to spread. Last month, Sprint unveiled its U300 combo plug-in WiMax-Wi-Fi modem for laptops. The Sprint device, available for $149 with a two-year service agreement and a monthly charge of $80, has been available for a few weeks. The Sprint device is made by Franklin Wireless.
The Motorola combo device, however, carries no retail price and carriers offering the CPEi 775 model will set a retail price for the combo device or include it in service plans.
The newest piece of the Motorola device -- its WiMax capability -- is WiMax Forum Wave 2 ready in the 3.5 GHz band and includes support for the 5 MHz, 7 MHz and 10 MHz bandwidths.