Mobile WiMAX available next year, says NSN

07 Jun 2007

The mobile version of the WiMAX broadband wireless will be available next year, a senior Nokia-Siemens executive said at the BBWF Asia.

Lauri Oksansen, head of product technology at NSN, said although it was not yet available, much of the interest from operators centers on the mobile WiMAX solutions.

Oksansen said NSN believed the mobile standard, 802.16e, would be the "premium technology for the future."

"16e will probably be deployed for both fixed and mobile use cases. The fixed wireless version, 16d, "certainly has a market now, but in the longer run 16e will predominate in the wireless market."

He said he expected WiMAX 16e would be available in "large-scale deployments" next year, such as Sprint's US WiMAX network, for which NSN is one of the main suppliers.

Oksansen said WiMAX would play an important role in rural areas in Asia and elsewhere.

However, demand right now was "really being driven by spectrum and license availability."

China is a classic case, a market with "big potential, but their regulatory situation is not quite clear. There are some questions about frequency licenses - which frequency will be used."

In a forum session on WiMAX and seamless mobility, Stephen Wu, senior vice president, strategic marketing for NextWave, said the massive escalation in throughput would drive demand for the technology.

He said four years ago AOL's peak average throughput - that is, use of the whole network - at peak times was 11 kbps. Last year it was 22 kbps, he says.

"In our model some of the data out of the DSL forum, it looks like it will go to 50 of 100k in the next three years. So WiMAX will be built on a capacity basis, not a coverage basis."

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