Carrier WiFi

Should We Be Worried?

4:00 PM -- Hi Broadbanders,

The BBC investigative news program Panorama took WiFi into the controversial storm of radiation health risks this week in its show WiFi: a warning signal. The program showed that radio signals from a WiFi-enabled school classroom were three times stronger than those from a nearby mobile phone mast. The program reported that WiFi is no longer allowed in schools in Sweden because of the concern about health risks. At The Wireless Event, an annual wireless broadband and muni WiFi get together in London, industry executives shrugged their shoulders without answers or pointed to subsequent reports that the Panorama program used measurements that were "grossly unscientific." WiFi hotspot operator, The Cloud, said in a statement: "The Cloud welcomes any future research into the effects of radiation emitted from WiFi, but as there are no scientifically proven risks at this point, [we] will continue to operate within EU and International guidelines."

Here's the best of the rest:

A Little Too Embedded?
Brian West, president of 4G mobile broadband and CTO, Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), explained the WiMax business model at The Wireless Event in London. It's all about laundry. "I even believe a washing machine will need a WiMax chipset." Of course, he was talking about the importance of embedded devices and how Sprint wants to move away from the model of subsidizing handsets. So, when Sprint talks about covering 100 million of the population by the end of next year, will that be people or home appliances?

Wireless broadband provider Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR) has completed its first test of 802.16e equipment. The initial test covered a 15 square mile area in Hillsboro, Ore. The next phase will cover 145 square miles and more than the small number of users involved in this one. Clearwire is vying with Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) to be the first to launch mobile WiMax in the U.S.

We reckon Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) could be about to change course on WiMax. (See Cisco Reconsiders WiMax.)

Stealin', Stealin'
Finally, the South Korean media are reporting that four employees at steelmaker POSCO are accused of selling secrets about the domestic WiBro mobile broadband technology and leaking them overseas. One to watch, we think.


— The Staff, Unstrung

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