These days, if you want to launch a new wireless technology, you either must be on to something really good or else you’re totally insane and about to lose a freakin’ fortune. Recent history is littered with examples. Wireless USB? Nowhere. Ultra-Wideband? As if. And the city-blanketing “metro WiFi” services? Train wrecks...and that’s being kind.
Now, after years of trials and spot deployments around the world, we finally have WiMAX entering the fray. As of this writing, two U.S. cities, Baltimore and Portland, Oregon, now have city-wide WiMAX service, and there’s little doubt that provider Clearwire (which snapped up many of Sprint’s wireless assets recently) plans to increase its market coverage as quickly as customers, regulators, and balance sheets allow. Soon, WiMAX may be hitting your town. Is the technology ready for prime time? We sat down with VP of network deployment John Storch to get the whole story.