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WiMAX gathering set for Chicago

Aug 27, 2007 — by Jonathan Angel — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 1 views

A trade show claimed to be “the largest WiMAX-focused event ever held” will take place next month in Chicago. The fourth annual WiMAX World USA, scheduled for Sept. 25 through 27, will feature “participation by virtually all WiMAX players,” event organizer Trendsmedia says.

This year's WiMAX mega-event is expected to feature more than 230 exhibitors and sponsors. Additionally, the three-day conference will include more than 35 WiMAX operators and over 180 speakers.

According to Trendsmedia, the event will focus on three key themes:

  • Mobility — Why WiMAX is poised to transform the mobile Internet experience and when
  • WiMAX Ecosystem — How vendors, service providers and governments around the world are working together to create the WiMAX ecosystem of the future
  • Digital Cities — How municipalities are turning to WiMAX to overcome the digital divide between fixed broadband and WiFi

A “Mobile Broadband Executive Summit” will showcase the key players in the emerging mobile Internet ecosystem, with presentations by leading service providers, product vendors, and analysts. Presenters are scheduled to include Sprint, Cisco, MobiTV, Towerstream, and Ericsson.

In addition, a “WiMAX Solutions Theater” will be located on the WiMAX World exhibition floor. This will feature daily product briefings from companies such as Freescale Semiconductor, Fujitsu, Intel, Motorola, NEC, Nokia, Siemens, and Samsung.

Eliot Weinman, conference founder and president of Trendsmedia, stated, “We have already registered over 1,700 attendees, and expect that over 6,000 WiMAX ecosystem players … will converge at this event in September.”

According to Berge Ayvazian, conference co-chair and chief strategy officer of Yankee Group (which owns Trendsmedia), “Independent research studies have projected that over the next four to five years, the WiMAX market will comprise between 5 [and] 10 percent of the overall worldwide telecommunications marketplace. The growth in the WiMAX market is clearly reflected in the increase in size of this year's event.”

WiMAX technology

WiMAX is an implementation of the IEEE 802.16 standard for wireless broadband. Driven by Intel (which has produced a WiMAX chipset), Samsung, and Sprint — among other companies — it is promulgated by the 400+ member WiMAX Forum.

WiMAX is said to provide fixed or mobile wireless broadband connectivity without the need for direct line-of-sight with a base station. According to a statement by the WiMAX Forum, with a typical cell radius deployment of 2 to 6 miles, WiMAX can deliver capacity of up to 40 Mbps. At lower data rates, it can operate over distances as long as 30 miles.

Clearwire Corporation recently entered into a letter of intent with Sprint Nextel, forming a partnership intended to create a nationwide mobile WiMax network. Today, Clearwire says it has about 300,000 customers in a variety of U.S. test markets.

An interesting article on the business aspects of WiMAX will appear in the Sep. 3, 2007 issue of Business Week.

In other news, Nokia recently revealed plans for a WiMAX-enabled version of its Linux-based web tablet.

Show registration

To register for the WiMax World USA event, visit the conference's Web site, here. Free expo-only passes are available, but pricing for the remainder of the conference was not announced.

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