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Intel wants WiMAX to lead Obama's tech initiatives

Last week at CES, Intel chairman Craig Barrett said that Intel would advise the new administration of Barack Obama to focus on wireless broadband and WiMAX in its tech initiatives.Intel has made significant investments in WiMAX technology, a wireless high-speed broadband technology that can potentially provide inexpensive Internet access to consumers and businesses over large distances without the need for local wifi antennas.
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Written by Tom Foremski on

Last week at CES, Intel chairman Craig Barrett said that Intel would advise the new administration of Barack Obama to focus on wireless broadband and WiMAX in its tech initiatives.

Intel has made significant investments in WiMAX technology, a wireless high-speed broadband technology that can potentially provide inexpensive Internet access to consumers and businesses over large distances without the need for local wifi antennas.

WiMAX will become integrated into future Intel chipsets in the same way that WiFi technology has become a standard part of its desktop and notebook products. However, there needs to be a substantial WiMAX infrastructure to take advantage of the WiMAX chipsets.

President-elect Barack Obama has said that he will appoint a national Chief Technology Officer that will look at the type of technology initiatives the US government should encourage and possibly invest in. Economic stimulus packages are focused on investing in infrastructure such as roads, bridges, etc. But there is also a digital infrastructure that needs to be built and Intel is hoping that WiMAX will play a major role in future wireless broadband deployments.

Intel CTO Justin Ratner plans to write to the new US CTO with results of a survey Intel is conducting which includes questions such as:

How would you rank the following - with 1 being the most important and 3 being the least important - for the Obama Administration’s CTO regarding technology and broadband/Internet?

- Provide incentives to citizens to make fast, affordable, high-quality broadband deployment a reality for all Americans.

- Focus on federal initiatives that expedite the roll-out of wireless broadband technologies across entire cities.

- Advocate open spectrum policies that enable mobile carriers and manufacturers to make market-driven agreements to deploy next-generation wireless broadband technologies like WiMAX.

WiMAX could help make Internet access more affordable to larger numbers of people and help bridge a digital divide. It would also help spur sales of computers and servers for Intel, as well as for many other tech companies involved in building a national WiMAX infrastructure.

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