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October 12, 2006

WiMax World: Floor goodies

Posted by Tricia Duryee at 4:10 PM

BOSTON -- As the final day of the conference was winding down, I took a quick walk through the WiMax World show floor featuring 140 exhibitors.


Tricia Duryee
Posdata, a South Korean company, is developing a line of devices called Flyvo shown at WiMax World. ...

To be honest, most of the stuff wasn't too exciting, especially from a consumer perspective. In large part, the equipment on display included antennas, which look like mini-satellite dishes, and base stations, which look like a computer's hard drive.

But two things caught my attention.

The Motorola booth was particularly large and flashy, which is a little unusual for equipment-makers, but matches the company's sense of style, a la Razr.

What was noticeable in particular was the sign. It said, "Motorola welcomes NextNet Wireless," the equipment manufacturer that Motorola purchased from Clearwire in the summer for an undisclosed amount of money.

A former NextNet engineer, who was manning the booth as a new Motorolan, said the ink was still drying on his business cards, but so far, the acquisition was going smoothly.


... Each device has Wi-Fi and WiBro, a version of WiMax used in South Korea. ...

In the background, you could see the evolution of NextNet's modems. The newest model, which had a signature "M" stamped on it, incorporates both NextNet's proprietary wireless broadband technology and the new mobile WiMax standard yet to be formally completed.

The hybrid modem, about the size of a laptop, will help in the transition as people move from NextNet's networks to standardized WiMax networks.

Motorola also had some pretty sexy devices, which they wouldn't let me photograph. But to give you an idea, instead of a clunky modem, the Motorola folks have packed the same technology into a stylish cylinder that looks a little bit like a miniature CP30.


... Some of the devices look like phones while others look more like PDAs or music players.

Another booth that caught my eye was a company called Posdata from South Korea. It was showing off a line of products branded Flyvo, made for the Korean market, which has rolled out a WiMax network called WiBro. The brand's tagline is appropriately "Flyvo makes the Internet fly."

The devices on display were the only ones I saw at all at the show, and illustrated the concepts I introduced earlier on Tech Tracks called "personal broadband"
or "open Internet."

Some of the devices looked like phones, while others looked more like a music player or a PDA. What they all have in common is that they have WiMax and Wi-Fi.

Some of the devices are currently being tested in South Korea.

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Tricia Duryee
Tricia Duryee
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