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WiMAX lights up today in Big Apple

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Monday, November 1, 2010

WiMAX lights up today in Big Apple

Today's Top News

1. Agri-Valley aims to be first rural LTE operator

By Lynnette Luna Comment | Forward | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Rural ISP and 3G operator Agri-Valley Communications aims to become the first rural operator to offer LTE through a deal with Nokia Siemens Networks.

The operator, based in Pigeon, Mich., plans to complement its current wireline, fixed and wireless CDMA EV-DO services with LTE in certain rural areas of Michigan. The company won spectrum in the 700 MHz auction back in 2008. NSN will provide LTE infrastructure and network management services.

According to Agri-Valley CEO Ed Eichler, the company came by its 700 MHz licenses quite cheap. "Talk about a perfect storm. We were able to negotiate and we have the cash to do this. No one else is in the position to do this," he said in an interview with FierceBroadbandWireless.

The company expects to have its first 10 test sites in operation by Nov. 15. Eichler said the company plans to roll out LTE in all of its 40 counties in the northern part of Michigan's Lower Peninsula within the next three to five years. Initially Agri-Valley will offer nomadic services.

Agri-Valley isn't a candidate to work with Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ), which has invited discussion with rural operators to fill out its LTE footprint, because it owns spectrum that is in AT&T Wireless' (NYSE:T) band class, Eichler said.

Agri-Valley also has backhaul covered as it has acquired a significant amount of fiber assets that include several miles of fiber. "We're putting a hub in there, and we've started talking to various middle-mile carriers to find out what fiber is available," Eichler said. The company is also willing to build some of its own middle-mile assets.

For more:
- see this
- read this
Telecompetitor article

Related articles:
Verizon in talks with rural operators for LTE spectrum deals
Verizon seeking USF money for rural LTE buildout
LTE roaming likely a long way off

Read more about: Verizon Wireless, Verizon, spectrum, rural broadband
back to top

2. WiMAX lights up today in Big Apple

By Lynnette Luna Comment | Forward | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

WiMAX is expected to officially turn on in New York today as Clearwire sped up the deployment of the network, lighting up a new WiMAX site every 90 minutes.

The service is expected to be available throughout New York and the northern section of New Jersey. To deal with interference caused by the vast number of buildings, Clearwire indicated it constructed more than 1,000 new cell sites and deployed hundreds of picocells to enhance coverage in Manhattan. The operator also positioned several of its cell sites and antennas facing upward to bolster coverage on the top floors of skyscrapers.

Earlier this month, Clearwire and Sprint Nextel (NYSE:S) gave the launch timeline for New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco. Nov. 1 was the announced launch date for New York. Los Angeles is expected to light up on Dec. 1 while San Francisco will come online later in December. Time Warner Cable is also expected to launch its own branded service in Yew York, and Comcast will launch its service in San Francisco. Both companies are investors in, and wholesale partners of, Clearwire. Sprint, which markets its services under the Sprint 4G brand, owns 54 percent of Clearwire.

The companies' time-to-market advantage soon will be narrowed significantly. Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) plans to launch LTE in 38 markets--including Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco--and at 60 airports before the end of the year. MetroPCS (NASDAQ:PCS) has launched its own LTE service in Dallas and Las Vegas.

For more:
- see this
Dow Jones article

Related articles:
Clearwire, Sprint outline major WiMAX market launches
Report: Clearwire hopes to raise $5B by auctioning 40 MHz of spectrum
Clearwire delays Denver, Miami retail market launches
Clearwire CTO urges infrastructure industry to focus on capacity
Clearwire to begin testing LTE, promises speeds of 20-70 Mbps

Read more about: WiMAX, Time Warner Cable, Sprint Nextel, san francisco
back to top

3. Novatel: Sales expected to jump in 4Q thanks to MiFi

By Lynnette Luna Comment | Forward | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Novatel Wireless reported a loss and lower sales during the third quarter compared with the third quarter in 2009 but is expected to see growth in revenue in the fourth quarter because of growing demand for its MiFi mobile hotspot device. In particular, Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) is bundling the device with the Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad.

Novatel expects a revenue bump of 45 percent in the fourth quarter, basing that figure on the order backlog for the MiFi--a credit-card sized router that can connect up to five WiFi-enabled devices via a 3G connection. Verizon is bundling the MiFi with the iPad in 2,000 of its stores nationwide.

Novatel also said it anticipates fourth-quarter sales of $110 million to $115 million because of the demand for the MiFi, an increase from $75.6 million in the third quarter. During the third quarter, Novatel lost $4.3 million, or 14 cents a share, excluding items.

For more:
- see this
San Diego Tribune article

Related articles:
Verizon to sell Apple's iPad, bundled with MiFi product
Novatel announces 4G device readiness  
Verizon's answer to WiFi: MiFi

Read more about: WiFi, Verizon Wireless, Verizon, third quarter
back to top

4. Intel re-affirms love for WiMAX in Taiwan

By Lynnette Luna Comment | Forward | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Intel CEO Paul Otellini recently met with the president of Taiwan, Ma Ying-jeou, to give his assurances that Intel is still committed to making WiMAX chips.

Ever since Intel closed down its Taiwan WiMAX Program office in June, the Taiwanese government had feared Intel was waning in its support for WiMAX altogether. The government has invested some $220 million in related technologies and applications for WiMAX, and a significant amount of that money went into Intel's Taiwan efforts. Intel reportedly never informed Taiwan's Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA), which had previously signed a WiMAX cooperation agreement with Intel along with other partners in Taiwan, that it intended to shut the office down.

Intel's director of advanced technical sales and services in the Asia-Pacific region then separately endorsed WiMAX saying, "Intel is fully committed to WIMAX." He also said that user demand would guide WiMAX's future and not Intel's technological decisions.

For more:
- see this article

Related articles:
Intel ends WiMAX Program Office in Taiwan
Intel makes more investments in WiMAX
WiMAX has lost the battle, but LTE hasn't won the war

Read more about: WiMAX, Taiwan, Paul Otellini, Intel
back to top

5. Europe's operators debunk LTE as solution to network overload

By Lynnette Luna Comment | Forward | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Operators at the Broadband World Forum in Paris debunked the belief that LTE is a solution to overloaded mobile networks.

During a panel discussion at the forum, Deutsche Telekom executive Denis Gautheret said the primary factor limiting LTE's capacity is spectrum. He said the lower frequencies may provide better coverage but capacity is limited. He was primarily talking about the 800 MHz digital dividend band in Europe.

For Telefonica, the focus is on improving indoor penetration of 2.6 GHz spectrum by using femtocells and smaller cells to increase capacity. "Telefonica is moving toward street level picocells and femtocells... based on this 2.6GHz frequency," said Jaime Lluch Ladron, technology executive at Telefonica.

Vodafone Spain and Elisa in Finland plan to offer premium packages to the enterprise and high-value subscribers to prioritize traffic and offloading the rest.

For more:
- see this
Rethink Wireless article

Related articles:
LTE: Deutsche Telekom goes rural with 800MHz LTE
Vodafone Germany in race to deploy rural LTE network
LTE: Vodafone Germany unveils tariffs and deployment plans
O2 Germany to use NSN for LTE pilot
Deutsche Telekom in LTE network sharing talks with rivals

Read more about: Vodafone, Telefonica, Picocells, femtocell
back to top

SPOTLIGHT ON... Verizon launches tiered data pricing plans

As expected, Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) quietly launched tiered mobile data plans for smartphone customers as well as a Verizon’s new pricing options are available on the company’s website.range of options for tablet and mobile hotspot users late last week. The new smartphone plans are not yet permanent. As had been rumored, the nation's largest carrier kept its unlimited data plan for $30. Verizon added a $15 option for 150 MB of data. Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney said the new $15 plan is promotional, but declined to say when it will end. She said the plan will help users transition from feature phones to smartphones. Article

> Verizon Wireless and the FCC reached a record $25 million settlement for the wireless carrier mistakenly charging millions of customers for mobile data usage, the commission said in a statement. Article

> Japanese carrier DoCoMo said it will invest $3.3 billion in LTE. Article

> ZTE announced that it has received U.S. government security approval for its network infrastructure, making it the first Chinese vendor to receive the special nod. Article

> While the main German operators are discussing the prospect of using each others LTE networks for rural coverage, SFR has agreed to share its forthcoming upgrade to HSPA+ with its rivals, Orange and Bouygues Telecom. Article

> Mount Everest has been equipped with 3G coverage by a subsidiary of TeliaSonera, Nepalese wireless operator Ncell. Eight base stations, four of them powered by solar energy, have been fixed to the mountain, with the highest located nearly 17,000 feet up. Until now China Mobile has had partial coverage of the lower Chinese side of the mountain. Article

And Finally... A Florida man accused of stealing $6,000 dropped his wallet at the scene. Article

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