Cometa's CEO Weis Hints At WiMAX

We’ve been quite tough on Cometa here, throwing a dash of ridicule at their projections to have 20,000 hotspots by year-end when they were clearly not going to make it. We especially enjoyed their refusal to admit that their schedule was slipping. Now, I’m not sure what to make of Cometa’s CEO hinting that they might “put WiMAX to use.” It’s been clear to us a lot longer than it has been to the Cometa management that backhaul and authentication costs would stall any carrier-grade PWLAN hotspot business plan, so it’s good that Cometa is looking at ways of cutting those costs. It’s also likely that Cometa made the right business decision not to grow out their network until lower cost backhaul solutions were available, but while making sound business decisions, they would still be guilty of ample hubris in their 20,000 claim. As for WiMAX, I don’t think it will cut the costs of a carrier-grade solution enough, nor do I think it will be ready for prime-time soon enough to support a Cometa WiFi hotspot network… by that time EDGE, EV-DO and other WAN solutions will have blanketed the country, and Wayport et al. will have snapped up all the cherry commercial hotspots.

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