WiMAX still growing despite rush to LTE

The death of WiMAX technology at the hands of LTE may have been announced prematurely, says ABI Research. According to analysts, even though some key players had backed away from the technology, with Nortel ditching its mobile WiMAX business.

The death of WiMAX technology at the hands of LTE may have been announced prematurely, says ABI Research.

According to analysts, even though some key players had backed away from the technology, with Nortel ditching its mobile WiMAX business entirely and Alcatel-Lucent refocusing its R&D spend, the truth was quite different.

While Nortel had indeed left the mobile arena, it has maintained its fixed WiMAX business, and Alcatel-Lucent had refocused its WiMAX research spend because it viewed the technology “more as a wireless broadband solution than a fully mobile wireless solution”.

“Contrary to the popular view Alcatel-Lucent is still very much involved with mobile WiMAX,” said principal analyst Philip Solis. “The company has had its 3.5GHz products certified by the WiMAX forum; it’s ‘ngConnect’ programme includes mobile WiMAX; and it is working with Intel on an interoperability programme for mobile WiMAX devices.”

ABI predicted that WiMAX subscriber revenue will grow by over 4,000% in 2009 alone, and suggested that the industry would be foolish to throw everything into LTE just yet.

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