Light Reading

Cisco Weighs WiMax

Light Reading
LR Mobile News Analysis
Light Reading
2/1/2005
50%
50%

Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) says wireless metropolitan area specification WiMax could potentially be a challenger to 3G cellular networks for some high-speed data applications, but expects mass market acceptance of the technology is up to four or five years away.

The networking firm, which is a member of the WiMax Forum, has been fairly quiet on its plans for WiMax thus far. But, speaking to Unstrung on Friday, Cisco's Ann Sun, senior manager for wireless and mobility, shone a light on how the firm sees the market developing, while mostly sidestepping the question of what actual products Cisco will bring to the party [ed. note: company policy, dontcha know].

"WiMax now is like where we were with WiFi in 1999... with the standards just coming in place" says Sun.

Cisco's predictions about the adoption curve for the overall WiMax market are similar to what others have already laid out. Sun expects to see initial fixed-wireless WiMax products -- using the 802.16-2004 (née 802.16d) specification -- on the market at the end of 2005 or early 2006.

Initial mobile WiMax products -- using the 802.16e specification -- should hit the market in 2006 or 2007. Mobility and cheaper customer equipment should help to drive consumer interest, hopefully leading to mass market uptake by 2009 or 2010.

Cisco's Sun envisages fixed-wireless WiMax products being used as a cable or DSL replacement, mainly in "underserved rural areas in developed countries or in developing markets." Sun cites Brazil as an example of a developing country -- with a fairly large and diverse land mass -- that could use WiMax for wireless infrastructure purposes.

Mobile WiMax, however, seems to be the technology that interests Sun more. The 802.16e mobile update to WiMax should allow users to move between basestations at autmobile speeds, opening up some new possibilities for data, multimedia, and even VOIP applications.

"That's very compelling from a data application perspective," says Sun. "Our thinking is that it could potentially challenge some of these 3G [cellular] deployments."

And, as she notes, unlike the initial versions of the 802.11 wireless LAN standard, the WiMax spec already implements security and quality-of-service technology, which means that it could be suitable for more than just consumer applications from the get-go.

Sun regards WiMax and wireless LAN networking as complementary technologies. In fact, while talking about using the two networking mechanisms together, Sun drops a hint about the direction that Cisco itself may be going with the technology.

Cisco already has a product called the 3200 mobile access router that can be used for wireless access that hands off between different network types.

Sun suggests this could be used in municipal network deployments to switch between WiMax and wireless LAN networks. And this is not the only way the 3200 could be deployed: The box could potentially also use WiMax as a backhaul mechanism for WiFi users in a train and other mobile environments.

Of course, last November, Cisco CTO Charles Giancarlo left many thinking that backhaul was about all WiMax was good for, at least in Cisco's eyes (see Cisco CTO Whips WiMax).

"Other than providing the backbone infrastructure that may be behind any WiMax deployment, Cisco is not invested in WiMax," Giancarlo told the Next Generation Networks conference in Boston. "DSL and cable are [already] there, and they are much more deterministic."

We should note that after Giancarlo made his comments, some analysts suggested that he was mainly talking about WiMax's use -- or rather uselessness -- as a home networking technology.

Whatever. Cisco seems to have mellowed out on its approach to WiMax a little since then. Although, Giancarlo and Sun are essentially saying the same thing, Cisco won't be pushing to deploy WiMax in areas that already have cable or DSL in place.

For Cisco, metropolitan area mobility seems to be the market where things start to get really interesting.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
self2
50%
50%
self2,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:27:57 AM
re: Cisco Weighs WiMax
Buy one Greg Raleigh company was enough for Cisco.
enderwiggan
50%
50%
enderwiggan,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:27:44 AM
re: Cisco Weighs WiMax
And of course Cisco looks to the potential Wimax revolution from the standpoint of a network hardware provider. Ever blinkered, they miss the idea of VOIP, which will without doubt result in high volume low cost voice calls over a high bandwidth network. Should they realise this, the growth potential for the company would be huge. Come on Cisco, you have one market, now here's an emerging market ripe for the picking and all before other potential hardware providers get a foot in the door!
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
From The Founder
Against the odds, Huawei is growing its telecoms networking equipment business in the US -- that should be ringing some alarm bells for domestic vendors.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Vodafone: Mobile Money Is About Customer Trust

8|27|15   |   06.36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading spoke with Vodafone's Ian Ravenscroft about the unique responsibilities and opportunities facing operators handling customers' financial transactions over the network.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Palo Alto Networks on Expanding in the Carrier/Service Provider Market

8|26|15   |   07:54   |   (0) comments


Alfred Lee from Palo Alto Networks tells Steve Saunders about their new chassis-based system, the PA-7080, and how it can benefit service providers compared to legacy firewalls.
LRTV Custom TV
Global Services Forum Preview

8|25|15   |   02:36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders talks about Huawei's upcoming Global Services Forum with the help of Heavy Reading's Patrick Donegan and Teresa Mastrangelo.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Infoblox on DNS Threat Index

8|19|15   |   04:39   |   (0) comments


Dilip Pillaipakam from Infoblox talks to Steve Saunders about his company's core network services.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Ihab Tarazi, Equinix

8|14|15   |   20:18   |   (1) comment


Equinix CTO Ihab Tarazi talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the dramatic changes in the data center, cloud and interconnect markets and discusses the impact of SDN and NFV in the coming years.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
The Netformx Ecosystem

8|14|15   |   09:39   |   (1) comment


Ittai Bareket, CEO of Netformx, talks with Steve Saunders about the Netformx Ecosystem, which employs cutting-edge prescriptive analytics to help solution providers maximize profits.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Versa Networks on Leveraging VNFs

8|12|15   |   07:37   |   (0) comments


Kumar Mehta, founder and CEO of stealth mode startup Versa Networks, talks with Steve Saunders about how providers can best leverage virtualized network functions (VNFs).
LRTV Custom TV
Transforming the Network Through OPNFV

8|5|15   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


Sandra Rivera, VP Data Center Group; GM Network Platforms Group, Intel Corporation, on OPNFV Arno and how the industry is coming together to accelerate the deployment of NFV and transform the network.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei ONS Product Demo

8|3|15   |   6:01   |   (0) comments


Huawei shows at Open Networking Summit 2015 in Santa Clara how its SDN and NFV solutions embrace openness.
LRTV Custom TV
End-User or Enterprise Benefits to the New IP

7|30|15   |   04:27   |   (1) comment


Andrew Coward discusses what the New IP means to end users or enterprise customers. He explains compelling reasons, including how every customer can get their own network, from the transformation to the New IP.
LRTV Custom TV
Network Visibility & the New IP

7|30|15   |   02:23   |   (0) comments


Mukund Srigopal provides an explanation of what network visibility is and how it is essential as service providers transition to the New IP. In addition, the importance of the network packet broker is discussed.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Basil Alwan, Alcatel-Lucent

7|24|15   |   26:44   |   (5) comments


Basil Alwan, President of IP Routing & Transport at Alcatel-Lucent, discusses virtualization, cultural challenges, the capex crunch and more with Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
November 17, 2015, Santa Clara, California
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Cisco's cloud and virtualization portfolio can increase business agility and innovation by building a more flexible network architecture.
Hot Topics
Verizon Hums a Driving Tune
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 8/26/2015
Gogo Approved to Speed Up In-Flight WiFi
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 8/24/2015
Could Market Volatility Hurt Tech IPOs?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 8/24/2015
Sprint's Claure: '3 to 5 Years' to Turnaround
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 8/25/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
September 22, 2015
Media Begins With “Me”
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Equinix CTO Ihab Tarazi talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about data center, cloud and the impact of virtualization in the coming years.
They say there's no such thing as a stupid question, but I probably sail pretty close to the wind in some of my interviews for LR. But then that's one of the things I ...
Cats with Phones
Cats & Boxes: A Love Affair Click Here