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5 October 2007


Firms position for WiMAX

The telecoms industry is on the verge of a major change, as mobile operators make critical decisions about 4G strategies, and mobile WiMAX (IEEE 802.16e) moves into real-world deployments of networks operating in the 2.5GHz and
3.5GHz bands, says market analysis firm ABI Research of New York, USA in its recent study 'WiMAX Market Analysis and Forecasts'.

"The mobile wireless industry is in a state of major change as mobile operators decide which IP-OFDMA (orthogonal frequency division multiple access) path they will take for their 4G networks," says ABI's principal mobile broadband analyst Philip Solis. "The new and unproven (on a large
commercial scale) mobile WiMAX has positioned itself against the potential Goliath that LTE (long-term evolution) is expected to become."

The study forecasts substantial numbers of WiMAX users by 2012, with more than 95 million using customer premises equipment (CPE) devices, and around 200 million using mobile devices.

Solis adds that, although while WiMAX equipment interoperability certification timelines have slipped and LTE has benefited from having evolved out of GSM technology, WiMAX is at least two years ahead of LTE in reaching the market.

With the exception of Qualcomm and Ericsson, the study says that the major semiconductor and equipment makers are staking out their positions in the sector, as are mobile operators. Vodafone is looking to WiMAX for its Middle East and Eastern European markets, while BT, Telecom Italia Mobile, and another as yet unnamed "major European mobile operator" are also showing considerable interest in WiMAX. ABI adds that chipset manufacturing firms are also positioning themselves for WiMAX, by supporting a wide variety of emerging device types, such as Ultra-Mobile PCs (UMPCs), mobile Internet devices, and consumer electronics products such as portable game devices, portable media players, and imaging devices.

'WiMAX Market Analysis and Forecasts' examines drivers and barriers for WiMAX and compares it to 3G and other 4G technologies, and contains forecasts for 802.16-2004 and 802.16e-2005.

See related items:

WiMAX developing rapidly in Asia/Pacific

Mobile WiMax and WCDMA infrastructure market growth to offset CDMA and GSM declines through 2011

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