WiMax Is Coming, Say Execs At Supercomm - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


WiMax Is Coming, Say Execs At Supercomm

WiMax is an industry move to a standards-based use of wireless technology, and the FCC has several initiatives in the works to make it a reality.

The buzz around WiMax technology isn't all hype, industry executives told attendees at a Supercomm 2005 conference session Tuesday. What's more, equipment and service providers are starting to deliver products for mobile WiMax, which offers more roaming flexibility over the traditional fixed WiMax.

WiMax is an industry move to a standards-based use of wireless technology, and the Federal Communications Commission has several initiatives in the works to make it a reality. For example, the FCC has recently allocated the 3.65-3.70 GHz spectrum for WiMax, which other countries can use instead of creating their own spectrums. "The spectrum is globally harmonized for WiMax use, and right now the time is right for the technology," said Khurram Sheikh, chief technical adviser of broadband wireless access at Sprint, during the session.

Meanwhile, the standard for mobile WiMax, also known as IEEE 802.16e, is nearing completion and is expected to be ratified this month or July, according to the WiMax Forum, an industry group. Mobile WiMax goes beyond the capabilities offered by fixed WiMax, known as the IEEE 802.16-2004 standard. Mobile WiMax provides wireless broadband connectivity without the need for a device to have a direct line-of-sight with a base station, and the ability for people to stay connected to the Internet while on-the-go at much higher speeds than today's cellular-based technologies.

But before mobile WiMax can take off, an ecosystem is needed to make it work, said former FCC chairman and chief John Muleta. This means government regulations have to be in favor of WiMax, service providers have to aggressively pursue the market, equipment vendors have to be fully committed to delivering products, chips have to be mass marketed, customer premises equipment has to be offered at lower costs, and applications need to be developed to make it all work. The vision for mobile WiMax is a user-centric broadband wireless experience. "When we think about these future services we think about providing buckets of gigabytes instead of buckets of minutes," Khurram says.

Equipment costs are expected to go down for WiMax in the next three years. In 2004, proprietary WiMax equipment went for as much as $1,000, said Ron Peck, director of marketing for Intel's WiMax Group. In 2007, however, PC cards for mobile WiMax are expected to cost about $100. Once PC cards hit the mass market, Intel plans to integrate them into laptops and phones. Said Peck: "But really, getting 802.16e into high volume will affect the price points."

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
Study Proposes 5 Primary Traits of Innovation Leaders
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  11/8/2019
Top-Paying U.S. Cities for Data Scientists and Data Analysts
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  11/5/2019
10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2020
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  11/1/2019
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
Getting Started With Emerging Technologies
Looking to help your enterprise IT team ease the stress of putting new/emerging technologies such as AI, machine learning and IoT to work for their organizations? There are a few ways to get off on the right foot. In this report we share some expert advice on how to approach some of these seemingly daunting tech challenges.
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll