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WiMAX may be rolling out sooner than you thought

I stopped by the Xohm (pronounced Zome) booth today at CES 2008 to try to get some answers on the roll-out of WiMAX in the U.S. While I think people understand the concept of WiMAX (wide-area WiFi) it seems with all the news of Sprint and Clearwire's decision to not move forward with a nationwide network many were left wondering if WiMAX was really going to happen and when. After talking with Xohm representatives and hearing the latest from Chief Technology Officer Barry West, Sprint Nextel, we will see WiMAX available commercially before the summer of this year.
matthew-miller
Written by Matthew Miller, Contributor writer on

I stopped by the Xohm (pronounced Zome) booth today at CES 2008 to try to get some answers on the roll-out of WiMAX in the U.S. While I think people understand the concept of WiMAX (wide-area WiFi) it seems with all the news of Sprint and Clearwire's decision to not move forward with a nationwide network many were left wondering if WiMAX was really going to happen and when. After talking with Xohm representatives and hearing the latest from Chief Technology Officer Barry West, Sprint Nextel, we will see WiMAX available commercially before the summer of this year. The representative said that the Xohm (a business division of Sprint Nextel) will be offering WiMAX on a fee-basis similar to what is offered by WiFi hotspots like T-Mobile has at Starbucks and other locations. So it seems you will be able to pay by hour, get a day pass, pay for a month, or maybe even a longer period of access time.

I have to admit I was giving very little thought to looking for a WiMAX-capable device because I though the launch was farther away in 2009 or something. The city of Seattle was one of the first to receive Sprint's EV-DO Rev. A service so I am hopeful they will be one of the first to get a WiMAX network as well.

I am now going to seriously look at a UMPC or ultra portable device with integrated WiMAX and understand there are a few already being promoted from companies like ASUS.

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