Sunday, March 4, 2007

WiMAX

Wrote this a few days back for our college symposium magazine , dunno whether this will be printed there , but i sure do have my own place to put this up , read this if you have the patience and comment , the information part was lifted from howstuffworks.com and i wrote the other little stuff MYSELF .. j/k..




We have reached a stage where internet access or in short connectivity is just something we cannot do without , also the need of the hour is fast, reliable and efficient connectivity , and connectivity makes all the more sense when it comes wireless.

Also going wireless not only saves up on the high costs required to build a cable network and other infrastructure, but also removes all cable restrictions and thus would provide connectivity on the move.


WiFi was the first system that actually promised efficient wireless connectivity, but this system depended on ` WiFi zones’ or `hotspots’ as they were commonly called, but the setting up of these hot spots required considerable investment, also the range of these hotspots were not all that high, so this meant the word wireless was just ‘namesake’ because it did not give the freedom to be on the move. So the search for wireless connectivity in the true sense of the word ended with the subsequent generation of WiFi which was called WiMAX.

WiMAX is short for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access.

WiMAX had the potential to do to broadband Internet access what cell phones have done to phone access. In the same way that many people have given up their "land lines" in favor of cell phones, WiMAX could actually replace cable and DSL services, providing universal Internet access just about anywhere you go. Thus finally there was a system with very minimum limitations and its features were just about fine for the present requirements.


WiMAX operates on the same general principles as WiFi , but just covers up on certain limitations that hindered the growth of WiFi,. In practical terms, WiMAX would operate similar to WiFi but at higher speeds, over greater distances and for a greater number of users. WiMAX could potentially erase the suburban and rural blackout areas that weren’t identified for setting up of hotspots or weren’t covered by broadband cables.

A WiMAX system consists of two parts:
• A WiMAX tower, similar in concept to a cell-phone tower - A single WiMAX tower can provide coverage to a very large area -- as big as 3,000 square miles (~8,000 square km).
• A WiMAX receiver - The receiver and antenna could be a small box or PCMCIA card (nowadays known as PC card), or they could be built into a laptop.

The fastest WiFi connection can transmit up to 54 megabits per second under optimal conditions. WiMAX should be able to handle up to 70 megabits per second. Even once that 70 megabits is split up between several dozen businesses or a few hundred home users, it will provide at least the equivalent of cable-modem transfer rates to each user.
The biggest difference isn't speed; it's distance. WiMAX outdistances WiFi by miles. WiFi's range is about 100 feet (30 m). WiMAX will blanket a radius of 30 miles (50 km) with wireless access. The increased range is due to the frequencies used and the power of the transmitter.
Considering the range of these WiMAX systems, probably cities could have WiMAX base stations set up in key areas for business and commerce and then allow people to use them for free. This could provide a strong draw when city leaders try to attract businesses to their area.
So this could be the next big technology knocking our doors this year, whether it will be received well by the people is still a big question, but WiMAX has started catching on in India and very soon we would come under these WiMAX zones which would give us connectivity in the true sense of the word, not only 24 X 7 or through the year , but in every nook and corner of the country .

1 ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS:

first_synn said...

Yeah Guru, hope WiMAX becomes common place pretty soon. Here in Singy almost everywhere is a WiFi hotspot, but it's kinda irritating to switch from network to network if one decides to get a more comfortable seat :)

 
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