Mobile WiMAX Products Finally Arrive -- So Everyone Claiming They Were Offering Mobile WiMAX Has To Scramble
from the so-what-was-all-that-prior-WiMAX-stuff? dept
And what were all the prior announcements that WiMAX certification was available? Well, this 2005 announcement was regarding fixed WiMAX, and this 2006 announcement was really about a suite for equipment makers to test their products in development. But that's behind us, there is now real Mobile WiMAX equipment available. Finally.
But, if certified mobile WiMAX gear is only available as of this week, what were all those other "mobile WiMAX" network announcements you've been hearing for years? Turns out many of them were what boosters dubbed "pre-WiMAX". But pre-WiMAX turns out to be defined as "not really WiMAX at all but I'm eager to get on the bandwagon." This massive reality gap between pre-WiMAX and standards-based WiMAX is illustrated by a recent story in which Clearwire Chief Strategy Officer Scott Richardson says "...Clearwire may use dual-mode devices to support both technologies [pre-WiMAX and WiMAX] and may overlay WiMAX equipment on its existing markets."
Dual-mode equipment and overlays? To manage an upgrade from "pre-WiMAX" equipment to "WiMAX" equipment? What he's really saying is that the older Nextnet-made gear is simply NOT compatible with WiMAX (i.e., it's NOT WiMAX and never was), and it eventually needs to be forklift-upgraded out. If this stuff was really just "pre-," then it should have taken no more than a software upgrade and a tweak or two to make it standard WiMAX (much like 54G was pre-G, or pre-n was basically = n WiFi). It's funny that the WiMAX bandwagon was so attractive, that companies that were absolutely not using WiMAX felt the need to call their solution WiMAX. Apparently it brought more press coverage, more public enthusiasm, and easier access to capital. But, it didn't mean they were actually offering WiMAX.