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Optical/IP

The Week in WiMax

2:45 PM -- This week in WiMax, here are the big issues, as I see them:

Still looking for WiMax stimulus funds, Open Range markets, and the elusive Cisco WiMax device
Remember when the thinking was that the great broadband stimulus giveaway would be a boon to the WiMax supplier and provider market? Wonder if that thinking is still valid, as stimulus funds start to trickle out with nary a WiMax-centric project in sight. While the gubmint seems to be getting its act together a little bit better with the second round of funds, the silence from WiMax folks like Towerstream Corp. (Nasdaq: TWER) and DigitalBridge Communications Corp. on their bids for funds makes us wonder what's up.

Is Open Range really open for business?
The Website is functional and still advertising the same services we saw last fall, but with nothing new on the site for months, you have to ask the question: Is Open Range Communications Inc. really open for business? Calls and emails for information are shunted through a PR firm, not a company rep. The "map of communities" Open Range has on its site is just a link to a USDA search engine, and not an actual map of Open Range-serviced communities. Tell us again why folks thought this plan was worth a $267 million loan from the American people?

In search of the Cisco WiMax device
Until we officially hear otherwise, we are going to keep asking and looking for the Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) WiMax end-user device for the Clearwire network that the company originally promised last May, when they announced their somewhat nebulous "partnership" with the WiMax provider. While Cisco's purchase of Starent shows a lot of intent to be a bigger player in the 4G IP core market, where oh where is our Linksys portable WiFi WiMax router? Do we need to sketch a picture and put it on milk cartons? Or can we assume this is a product that just isn't going to happen?

Plugfest
Need to know more about Clearwire and WiMax? Our second version of the "Clearwire NTK" report, which covers Clearwire events from June through September, costs less than a large beer at the local Sprint Nascar race. Just $4.95 at the Sidecut store. Also available for the Kindle. Available now for free download is our "WiMax Business Deployment Guide."

— Paul Kapustka is the founder and editor of Sidecut Reports, a WiMax analysis site and research service. He can be reached at kap[email protected]. Special to Unstrung.

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