3G, implemented 4 years ago, has almost reached its saturation point, and thus the war among major U.S wireless carriers- Verizon, AT&T and Sprint- has begun. 2010 is a turning point in the telecommunication market and companies are trying to take over the 4th generation industry: 4G.
Consumers expect a high speed connection between 100Mb /s and 1Gb/s, contrary to 3G which does not exceed 14.4 Mb/s. Two technologies with this capability are in competition: WiMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) and LTE (Long Term Evolution).
LTE is considered by many to be the obvious successor to current-generation 3G technologies. LTE’s promise of high-speed, two-way wireless data promises an “all-IP” mode of communication in which voice calls are handled via VoIP. It’s also designed to handle video and to permit roaming through multiple systems–from cellular to Wi-Fi and satellite. The LTE solution is supported by AT&T and Verizon and should be implemented by the end of 2010. However, LTE still remains slower than Wimax and tests show that the infrastructure is not mature enough, and will need about 2 more years to be completely efficient.
The other technology called WiMAX, developed by Sprint and Clearwire is already available as a type of broad-base Wi-Fi. More than 450 tests are on-going to deliver high-speed connections to cell phones and landline devices in more than 135 countries like Kenya, Russia, Bulgaria, Netherlands, India, Denmark, Japan and the US. The Wimax advantages are threefold: it can be spread in remote areas such as emerging countries; the technology is operational and functions with any device integrated with a Wimax chip; and it solves roaming problems. Despite these advantages and the anticipation over 4G, Sprint and Clearwire are not leaders of the U.S wireless carriers market. Indeed, LTE has a better popularity rating than Wimax, and neither Sprint nor Clearwire has enough money to challenge Verizon and AT&T.
While US carriers wrestle with these options, one wonders if a marriage between the two technologies would be a better alternative. WiMAX, which is already available and updated, could be implemented initially, allowing time to improve the LTE infrastructure. Thus, consumers can experience the superior performance of LTE without losing connectivity in the mean time. Accordingly, it seems that WiMAX and LTE are more complementary than rivals.… Read the rest
Betelecom launched mobile WiMAX in the Belarus capital of Minsk March 31. The company installed 22 base stations that use the 802.16e technology in the 3.5GHz frequency.
The services will be offered commercially, with new users getting a USB modem for the life of the contract. The company is also allowing users to test the service before signing a contract. Russia and eastern Europe have led the way in adopting WiMAX.
Yota in Russia broke even after five months of offering commercial services and were the first to offer a WiMAX-enabled phone and other important devices like mobile hot spots and USB modems.WiMAX continually gets adopted by European and other international countries faster than in the U.S. but that will change in 2010 as strides are being made in deployment in the U.S. WiMAX is going to be the next great technology.
Photo Courtesy of Stella’s Mom via Flickr… Read the rest
Samsung and Yota have signed another contract that will help build out a complete WiMax network across Russia. Samsung will supply over 5,000 base stations and Access Control Routers beginning in March 2010. Yota will expand its mobile WiMax network to 15 cities including Sochi, the host of the 2015 Winter Olympic Games.
Yota selected Samsung as its sole Mobile WiMax equipment vendor in 2008. Since then, Samsung has supplied Yota with over 4,500 Mobile WiMax macro and pico cellular base stations for commercial Mobile WiMax services in Russia.
Yota has 300,000 mobile WiMax users in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Ufa and has already provided service to over 50,000 subscribers in Kransnodor and Sochi.
Yota has already teamed with Samsung in the past – the two companies partnered to launch a network in Nicaragua and later broke even in their first five months of rolling out service in Russia.
Photo Courtesy of yeowatzup via Flickr… Read the rest
Delta Telecom has launched a commercial mobile WiMax network in the Azerbaijan capital of Baku and the Absheron Peninsula. It started with 110 base station installations in those locations.
The commercial WiMax packages with range in cost, from AZN10 to AZN100. The company is now working to deploy WiMax services throughout other parts of the country, including Guba, Ganja and Astara. It will require the installation of another 140 base stations.
Delta plans for their current WiMAX network integration with Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology to enable mobile broadband access and services such as Internet-Provided Television, mobile video blogging and online gaming.… Read the rest
According to Cellular News, Yota, the Russian WiMax provider, disclosed that it has arrived at the operational breakeven point in only 5 months after the launch of the WiMax network in Moscow and St Petersburg. The deployment in a third Russian city, Ufa, took place in October.
Also in October, the company counted 200,000 active subscribers and measured a total data transfer volume of 1.848 TB in all three cities. “It took the company less than five months of network commercial operation to reach the operational break-even point” said Yota General Director Denis Sverdlov. He added that Yota’s success is evidence that the 4G telecommunications service sector is a profitable business investment.
Yota’s subscription rates peaked in September and October with an average of over 2,000 new subscribers per day. But these numbers seem to be just the beginning as they can be expected to grow even further when Yota extends its network services to the next two Russian cities on the list – Sochi and Krasnodar. By 2010, Yota plans to expand its network coverage area to 15 more Russian cities.… Read the rest