Clearwire's Non-WiMax Now Non-Useful: Blocks VoIP, Streaming Media

from the wonderful dept

Craig McCaw's Clearwire wireless outfit has received plenty of attention -- mainly for being run by Craig McCaw. Late last year, Intel had to pay Clearwire to convince them to use WiMax (which, still doesn't actually exist) as the core of their wireless offering, as WiMax was proving to be increasingly less than the hype would have you believe. Earlier this month, Bell Canada made a surprise announcement, saying they would provide VoIP for Clearwire in the US -- giving the Canadian telco a way to enter the US market. Still, it appears the folks at Clearwire haven't been paying attention to the whole "network neutrality" debate or the fact that an ISP has been fined for blocking Vonage. Instead, Clearwire proudly states that they will block any application they don't like -- including non-Bell Canada VoIP and any streaming audio or video offering. In other words, Clearwire's wireless broadband is becoming close to useless, because they want to control what you can and can't do over it. They claim they need to do this "to ensure network performance reliability," but can't explain how it's okay for them to offer VoIP, but Vonage must be blocked. More importantly, if Clearwire is saying they can't have a stable network when people are doing VoIP or streaming media, it certainly raises a lot of questions about the quality of WiMax.

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  1. identicon
    singprb, 4 Oct 2009 @ 1:34pm

    Poor for my games. Inconsistent Speeds.

    Well, I dumped Qwest the other day (really stupid) because they cut off my internet. So I went to my local Best Buy and the sales associate told me about CLEAR. He told me that there was 4g networks where i lived (Boise, ID) and asked me for my address. I told him, and he said i was in luck. I was next to three towers. He told me that i would have EXCELLENT internet. Great for Online Gaming, Downloading Large files, everything! I signed up for the 3Mb/s plan. He told me to try it out for a week, and if i wasn't satisfied with it, just take it back to them. Well, I got it home, and for the first 3 hrs, IT WAS SUPERB! Playing games with a ping of 20-60. I was in awe. Then, all hell broke loose. My modem only showed me with 2 bars, then 1. Then the unthinkable happened. My internet had stopped working, for about an hour. When it came back up, I started to play some CS:S and CoD4 on the PC. Oh wow, the horror. in CoD4, i was in my friend's server (he lives like 5 blocks away from me) and my ping was about 560-999 (auto-disconnect) it never went back down to the average 20-60. Then in CS:S my ping stayed at a steady 869 exactly. I then did a speedtest. I had really inconsistent speeds. 10kb/s to 56b/s. WAY lower than what they had advertised to me. Not even half! With a stroke of luck, i had a 1.3Mb/s test, but it turned out it was just a fluke with my internet latency. I will probably be taking this CLEAR WiMax modem back to Best Buy and cancel my plan. I mean, i'm only on the second day of my 1-week trial! Thanks Clearwire, for making EVERYTHING clear. STAY AWAY FROM YOU.

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