Proxim & Intel: MANly Friends

Wireless equipment vendor Proxim Corp. (Nasdaq: PROX) has teamed up with chipmaker Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) to develop products based on the WiMax wireless metro-area network standard.

Proxim has also announced that it will offer software updates for its current fixed wireless broadband offerings that facilitate faster radio handoffs between its base stations, so that users can stay connected while mobile.

Proxim is following in the footsteps of Alcatel Shanghai Bell Co. Ltd. and Siemens Information and Communication Mobile Group by working with the silicon sumo (see WiMax Gets Serious).

Jeff Orr, product marketing manager of Proxim's WAN division says that Proxim will introduce its first WiMax products based on the 802.16a revision d fixed wireless specification in the first quarter of 2005.

"We're collaborating with Intel to develop fixed and portable WiMax solutions," says Orr.

To that end, Proxim is also working with Intel on 802.16a revision e products and actually finalizing the mobile variant of this specification. Orr had no time schedule for these products yet.

In the meantime, the company is offering a mobility update for existing proprietary broadband units, like the Tsunami outdoor wireless bridges, which incorporates some of the capabilities the company expects to eventually turn up in the WiMax specification.

The company has been testing such handoff capabilities on high-speed trains to demonstrate the viability of mobile applications. "At speeds of up to 125 MPH we have demonstrated mobility," says Orr.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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