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David Williams
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David Williams
Global Director of Sales, Research
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Mobile WiMax: Who Goes Where?
Mobile WiMax is attracting huge interest as the leading next-generation wireless access technology. Depending on their perspective, service providers see it as potentially capable of delivering everything from wireless DSL to “better than” T1/E1 enterprise access, or mobile broadband services for handheld devices. But there are really two kinds of WiMax: Fixed WiMax and Mobile WiMax.

Mobile WiMax is focused on the concept of personal mobile broadband, made possible by a high performance radio system standardized by the IEEE 802.16 Task Group E (802.16e), and also known in Korea as “WiBro.” But although it is often pitched as complementary to wireless LAN and 3G cellular, one of the driving motivations behind Mobile WiMax is to develop an “open” technology platform that outperforms 3G, is more suited to an all-IP network architecture, and has less onerous intellectual-property licensing terms.

It’s hard to judge if widespread adoption of the Mobile WiMax platform is a realistic objective, but if it even halfway meets expectations, investors and major equipment vendors know they can’t risk being left on the outside. For startups, Mobile WiMax is an opportunity to leapfrog the market for Fixed WiMax systems (based on IEEE 802.16-2004 specifications), which they see as suffering from designed-in obsolescence.

This report identifies and analyzes the chipsets and system vendors innovating in this critical, long-term market and plots the long-term convergence of WiMax with cellular systems.
Sample research data from the report is shown in the excerpts below:
Table of Contents (uni0705_toc.pdf)
This chart positions Mobile WiMax against wireless LAN and cellular technology, based on five key attributes. In summary, Mobile WiMax occupies the middle ground: It is less mobile than cellular and will, in practice, have lower throughput than wireless LAN.
[click on the image above for the full excerpt]
The table below summarizes the funding position of several 802.16 chipset startups. Aggregate funding in the sector is relatively modest, particularly relative to investment in 802.11 chip startups three or four years ago. This probably reflects uncertain demand, immaturity of the market, nervousness resulting from flameouts in 802.11, and the early, intimidating presence of Intel in the market.
[click on the image above for the full excerpt]
Companies covered in this report: Adaptix Inc.; Airspan Networks Inc.; Alcatel (NYSE: ALA; Paris: CGEP:PA); Alvarion Ltd. (Nasdaq: ALVR); Analog Devices Inc. (NYSE: ADI); Aperto Networks Inc.; ArrayComm Inc.; Aspex Semiconductor Ltd.; Beecem Communications Inc.; Cambridge Broadband Ltd.; Cygnus Communications Inc.; Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERICY); Fujitsu Ltd. (Tokyo: 6702; London: FUJ); Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd.; Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC); LG Electronics Inc. (London: LGLD; Korea: 6657.KS); Lucent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: LU); Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT); Navini Networks Inc.; NextNet Wireless Inc.; Nokia Corp. (NYSE: NOK); Nortel Networks Ltd. (NYSE/Toronto: NT); PicoChip Designs Ltd.; Proxim Corp. (Nasdaq: PROX); Redline Communications Inc.; Roke Manor Research Ltd.; Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC); Sequans Communications; Siemens AG (NYSE: SI; Frankfurt: SIE); SiWave Inc.; SR Telecom Inc. (Toronto: SRX); TeleCIS Wireless Inc.; Wavesat Wireless Inc.; Wi-LAN Inc. (Toronto: WIN); and ZTE Corp. (Shenzhen: 000063; Hong Kong: 0763).
Total pages: 20
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