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Cable Rescues US WiMax?

Michelle Donegan
Wireless Bits
Michelle Donegan
3/26/2008

7:45 AM -- Mobile WiMax in the U.S. is ready for a comeback if a report in The Wall Street Journal is true. The WSJ reports that Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), and Bright House Networks are discussing plans to invest $1.6 billion in a new wireless company that would be operated by Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) and Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR) and would blanket the U.S. with WiMax.

Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) and Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) could also foot some of the bill, according to the report. (See GooMax, Clearwire-Sprint Deal Soon? , Clearwire & Sprint: On Again?, and Clearwire Q4 Drops, WiMax News Doesn't.)

In the reported plan, Comcast would contribute $1 billion, Time Warner would put up $500 million, while Bright House would chip in between $100 million and $200 million.

In total, the companies are looking to raise $3 billion to make the venture work. So, will Google and Intel cough up the rest to make mobile WiMax a reality in the U.S?

If nothing else, the news will make the 4G discussions at the CTIA Wireless show next week in Las Vegas very interesting indeed. (See Verizon Goes LTE and Verizon, Vodafone Head for LTE.)

— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Unstrung

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