Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (WiMax) will be the next generation wireless technology mobile gurus have been dreaming of since our first taste of 802.11b. Intel this week released their “Rosedale” chipset; this will allow OEMs to create some heavy duty networking gear. Our current technology allows for WiFi to transmit to about 300 feet from a base station at best. Deployment can be costly especially for large area coverage, with WiMax that range can be extended to over 50 kilometers giving even the most remote country folks a taste of broadband.
WiMax, formally named 802.16d CPE, will offer around 70 mbps data transfer speeds to users. Other protocols currently being developed will compete with WiMax, 802.11n, the next generation version of the 802.11 standard and the W-CDMA evolved HSDPA are both capable of offering widespread broadband coverage but will require a mesh type deployment.
Fujitsu and Wi-Lan Ltd. have also announced plans to release their WiMax chips this week. Which one will out perform the other? This is what OEMs must find out before creating a weak WiMax product.