Thursday, September 25, 2008

WiMax, The Lost Potential

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October 8th will be the official launch of the first WiMax service to be offered to American consumers. Subscribers in Baltimore will be the first to receive broadband using WiMax technology. While that's a good thing to see an alternative to the cable and DSL services already in place, the new entrant into market in Baltimore from the same old club of telecom companies. Sprint is the first out of the block to provide WiMax.

WiMax was seen as a techology that would allow new companies to break the cable telco broadband duopoly instead of breaking the duopoly it will only extend it to rural and remote areas that the cable and telcos couldn't justify the cost of wiring for broadband.

There would be more than enough spectrum available to allow more than one provider of WiMax service but how likely would it be that startup ISP would spend the money on WiMax knowing that their competition is both DSL and WiMax service from the big telcos and the cable modem and WiMax service from the cable companies.

In short this probably will relegate WiMax as a supplemental service for the cable and telcos, and not as a competitive technology. The greatest potential for any technology has just been lost.

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