Wi-Fi Destined to be Powered to the “MAX”
Wi-Fi is considered to be the coolest thing since color screens for many PDA users, however it can also be considered just a “longer chain” than the ol’ ethernet cable. Consumers are gunning for PDA’s with integrated Wi-Fi, but many who are previously uninformed find themselves confused and disappointed to be limited to a ‘hot spot” at Starbucks or struggling to check email on their PDA while staying at a hotel with no “Wi-Fi” access. To add to the new users’ bewilderment, there is the inevitable cost for the T-Mobile or Verizon wireless plans to connect to these hotspots, which comes as a surprise to many first-time users.
So what if instead, Wi-Fi users could connect virtually anywhere, using the same primary account for access at home or on the go, and could maintain a guaranteed connection on a PDA within a 30 mile radius of the designated “hot spot”?
Well this scenario may not be all too far away in the distant future. A new Wi-Fi technology dubbed “WiMax” is under development by Intel Corp. and is positioned to offer a way for broadband service providers to allow a 30 mile range signal (from a single access point) to users. As if that isn’t exciting enough, the new WiMax or 802.16 technology is expected to transfer data at at a whopping 70Mbit/sec rate. That rate would be over 600% faster than the current speed of 802.11 technology which transfers data at about an 11Mbit/sec rate and only allows a maximum 1000 foot range from an access point.
WiMax will no doubt need to be compliant with local laws and FCC regulations, however once these challenges are overcome, a “wireless world of opportunity” will be beckoning to mobile users.
Barry J. Doyle
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