Gateway to WiMax

5:25 PM -- Wondering how Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) might add to its infrastructure portfolio if it gets into the WiMax base-station game? One thought is that the networking giant will add a WiMax access service network (ASN) gateway. (See Cisco Wooing WiMax Vendors? and More on Cisco's WiMax Ambitions.)

An ASN box is a core component in a WiMax network. It helps with signaling and synchronizing handoffs between base stations, among other key tasks.

One of my original sources for the WiMax story points out that Cisco "already has ASN products -- they have a strategic alliance with Alvarion Technologies Ltd. (Nasdaq: ALVR)."

The choice of startups is limited in the gateway market. "WiChorus Inc. are the only startup I know of in this space -- a very good startup mind you," the source adds. "Would not be a bad purchase for someone. "The other big player, of course, is Starent Networks Corp. (Nasdaq: STAR), already in Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S)."

Starent is best known for its work in the cellular market, but it's also working on a mobile WiMax ASN.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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