x

This Week in WiMax

7:45 AM -- This week in WiMax, here are the big issues, as I see them:

Sprint leading the way for business WiMax adoption
The announcement this week of a beefy portable WiFi/WiMax router from Sprint was pretty good evidence that Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), and not Clearwire LLC (Nasdaq: CLWR), will be leading the charge when it comes to marketing WiMax services to businesses. (See Sprint Offers 4G Routers.)

Given Sprint's standing relationships with enterprises on the cellular side of things, it's perhaps no surprise that Clearwire's majority owner should take the fore in selling 4G to the Fortune 1000. And trust us: A portable router that can support 32 WiFi connections isn't aimed at the consumer market.

As more markets get WiMax and more customers start using the new PocketSpot devices like the WiMax gear from Cradlepoint Inc. or the MiFi for 3G now being sold in the U.S. by Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) and Sprint, it should be interesting to see who is buying the devices, and how they are using them. Though Sprint's new entrants are unique in that they can use both 3G and 4G services, you have to wonder how long it will take 32 users to eat up the monthly 5 GByte download limit of the 3G service contract. "You're gonna need WiMax for that" is a line Sprint salesfolk probably already have memorized.

When will we get to 100 WiMax devices?
While WiMax backers have to be heartened by the continued pace of Clearwire rollouts and product additions like Sprint's, we can't help but wonder how the industry is going to reach Clearwire co-chairman Ben Wolff's previously stated goal of 100 WiMax devices by the end of the year. (See Clearwire Launches in 10 New Markets.)

The portable routers might indeed be a broadband game-changer, but for most folks mobility is something you hold in your hand, not in your briefcase. If Clearwire and other WiMax proponents really want to get momentum rolling behind the technology, there need to be more devices -- an Apple touchpad, perhaps? -- that truly take advantage of WiMax mobility. Right now, those devices (other than the Samsung Mondi) are MIA.

Plugfest
Need to know more about Clearwire and WiMax? My Clearwire NTK report costs less than a triple-soy grande chai latte. Just $4.95 at the Sidecut store. Also available for the Kindle.

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

kaps 12/5/2012 | 3:58:47 PM
re: This Week in WiMax

And I suppose those business users are supposed to wait for LTE, which is right around the corner?


Still searching your comment for a point... some meaning... an original thought... nope.

kaps 12/5/2012 | 3:58:47 PM
re: This Week in WiMax

And I suppose those business users are supposed to wait for LTE, which is right around the corner?


Still searching your comment for a point... some meaning... an original thought... nope.

mobileinsider 12/5/2012 | 3:58:43 PM
re: This Week in WiMax



 Signals Research Group put things in perspective when it comes to WiMAX's real competition --- and it's not LTE... This is from his group's latest Signals Ahead report "Wassup with WiMAX?" from July 21, 2009 

"...if one compares the sustainable WiMAX ecosystem with the sustainable HSPA ecosystem, then the advantage clearly lies with HSPA – both from the perspective of the number of companies that it can support as well as to the overall size of the addressable market. And as we have argued in the past, the real competition for Mobile WiMAX is HSPA and not LTE. Once an operator deploys HSPA it isn’t going to look back and reconsider a switch it Mobile WiMAX. When the HSPA operator ultimately deploys LTE is an entirely different question, but it will ultimately be a question of when and not if."

Twitter/Mobileinsider




kaps 12/5/2012 | 3:58:43 PM
re: This Week in WiMax

We've been arguing that it's not a battle between WiMax and LTE for quite some time now -- read this article perhaps as a refresher. Not so sure I agree that Signals delivers "perspective" as much as they are simply stating the obvious, that carriers with different spectrum holdings and different histories will likely choose different technologies. As we said:


"Unlike other VHS/Betamax-type standards battles, the one for wireless data supremacy in the United States might not be a zero-sum game, given the widely divergent technology qualities, regional spectrum positions, and go-to-market plans of the various providers."


But I thought you were arguing about end-users... or is the point of your comments shifting again?


 

kaps 12/5/2012 | 3:58:43 PM
re: This Week in WiMax

We've been arguing that it's not a battle between WiMax and LTE for quite some time now -- read this article perhaps as a refresher. Not so sure I agree that Signals delivers "perspective" as much as they are simply stating the obvious, that carriers with different spectrum holdings and different histories will likely choose different technologies. As we said:


"Unlike other VHS/Betamax-type standards battles, the one for wireless data supremacy in the United States might not be a zero-sum game, given the widely divergent technology qualities, regional spectrum positions, and go-to-market plans of the various providers."


But I thought you were arguing about end-users... or is the point of your comments shifting again?


 

mobileinsider 12/5/2012 | 3:58:39 PM
re: This Week in WiMax

Hi


My points are simply tied to experience, pragmatism (operators) and self-interest (consumers). Operators care about the business case. We (consumers) care about the experience & price (mobility & roaming we take for granted).


As for SRG, CA and ABI & leading financial analyst teams, they take field tests to verify their analysis. They trust Powerpoint as much as they trust politicians.


twitter/mobileinsider

HOME
Sign In
SEARCH
CLOSE
MORE
CLOSE