Individual Project- WiMAX Wireless Technology

by Hazael A
The creation of WiMAX wireless technology is in the forefront of mobile wireless technology as the movement begins to move to the 4G realm.  With the movement into a different technology, questions arise regarding what the possibilities of WiMAX can be.  The paper will discuss the advantages of WiMAX wireless technology, how WiMAX compares to current Wi-Fi technology, how the implementation process of WiMAX will be executed, and the potential value/impact WiMAX wireless technology will have on modern firms and businesses.

Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access or WiMAX wireless technology has several advantages including the capability to deliver speeds several times faster than the current 3G wireless technology.  WiMAX is capable of delivering speeds as fast 70 megabits per second, which is as fast as broadband service(Brain and Grabianowski, 2009). Not only are the delivery speeds faster but coverage areas covered by WiMAX is also increased up to 30 miles to allow more users to access the connection.  With the availability of WiMAX and the strength of its signal being as strong as cable and DSL services, WiMAX can be used as an alternative to cable and DSL internet services.  Cable and DSL requires the use of cable hook ups, which is an added cost that is reflected in the high prices of monthly fees paid for internet services.  Clearwire can provide WiMAX internet services for as low as $30 a month and is completely wireless for the user.  The features WiMAX has to offer are wonderful but how does it compare to Wi-Fi.

WiMAX and Wi-Fi have similarities and differences alike.  The main similarity between WiMAX and Wi-Fi is the means of transmission of data using radio signals.  The use of radio signals to transmit data allows for WiMAX and Wi-Fi to both transmit wirelessly. The differences with WiMAX and Wi-Fi begin with the coverage distance allowable by both technologies.  Wi-Fi is able to transmit data over a distance of about 100 feet, while WiMAX is able to cover an area of 30 miles with wireless access.  The use of a different frequency and the power of the WiMAX transmitter allow for the increased range.  Speed is another difference where WiMAX is able to transmit data at a faster rate.  Under optimal conditions WiMAX is able to transmit up 70 megabits per second, while Wi-Fi is only able to transmit up to 54 megabits per second(Brain and Grabianowski, 2009).  In the area of speed and distance of coverage WiMAX wireless technology is superior to Wi-Fi, but how can WiMAX be implemented in today’s market.

How is WiMAX going to be implemented into today’s market?  The implementation involves the building of WiMAX towers that are connected directly to a wired connection.  The WiMAX towers are able to send the signals then to other towers through line-of-sight transmissions which hold a higher frequency, which has less interference and a higher bandwidth.  Non-line-of-sight transmissions would hold a deliver a lower wavelength signal which is better at diffracting and bending around obstacles.  The signals would be picked up by a WiMAX receiver that is set up at a home or built into a laptop.  Having a WiMAX receiver built into a laptop would allow for a connection all over the coverage area.  The company currently undertaken the huge task of implementing WiMAX coverage across America is Clearwire.  Clearwire has gathered partners and investors from industry leaders in mobile internet from companies such as:  Intel Capital, Comcast, Sprint, Google, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, and Samsung(“About CLEAR,” 2009).  The investor backing is needed as each WiMAX tower costs $150,000 to build.  The cities that Clearwire has provided WiMAX internet coverage include Seattle, Portland, Las Vegas, Boise, Chicago, and Philadelphia amongst other cities.  So what type of impact will a WiMAX wireless technology have on firms and businesses today?

WiMAX wireless technology will allow for faster movement and execution of business activities.  Having an entire city covered in WiMAX internet coverage will no longer limit business to their office spaces or Wi-Fi hotspots in order to stay connected.  City wide coverage means an always on connection that is also as fast as cable and DSL connections.  WiMAX technology will no longer limit opportunities, but open them up for businesses and individuals alike.

Wimax Technology.  Retreived November 29, 2009 from http://www.intel.com/technology/wimax/

http://money.cnn.com/2009/02/05/technology/WiMaxs_last_hope_fortt.fortune/index.htm