This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book. | June 2008 | 19
“with ADSL2+ accounting for about 7 million and
WiMAX the remainder.”
Congress Asia: Upcoming WiMAX
SingTel, one of Asia’s biggest incumbents, is also
seriously considering WiMAX as its preferred “4G”
facts and fi gures Congress and regional
technology in its domestic market and the seven
countries in Asia where it has minority holdings
ºº WiMAX Forum Congress Asia was the
(Th ailand, Hong Kong, India, the Philippines,
largest WiMAX event to take place for
ºº Global Congress
Bangladesh, Indonesia and Pakistan).
the Asia-Pacifi c region, attracting 2,700
17-18 June, Amsterdam
“WiMAX is perceived within the SingTel group
visitors from 81 countries
as a viable alternative to wireline broadband
ºº WiMAX Russia & CIS
ºº 94% of those who visited Congress
services, both in developed and developing
21-22 October, Moscow
Asia will recommend their company
markets,” said Allen Lew, CEO of SingTel, in
to attend in 2009
ºº WiMAX India & SE Asia
his keynote presentation on the fi rst day of the
ºº 62% of visitors used this event for their
11-12 November, Delhi
conference. “It’s also a feasible consideration for
purchasing decisions ºº Congress Latin America
high-speed mobile broadband.”
ºº 87% of visitors had budgetary 3-4 December, Rio de Janeiro
As a sign of how seriously the SingTel Group is
responsibility of up to $5m
ºº Congress Asia
taking WiMAX, the company has set up its own
ºº 13% of visitors had budgetary
28-29 April 2009, Singapore
regional WiMAX collaboration team with the
responsibility of up to $10m
purpose of driving WiMAX standardisation and
interoperability within the SingTel Group. Th e
collaboration team is also being used, says Lew, operator plans to extend that to 100 cities by the relatively niche 2.3GHz profi le used in Korea, but
as a way of sharing WiMAX technical expertise end of 2008. the fi rst mobile WiMAX product certifi cation
throughout the SingTel Group. Zainal Amanshah, Group CEO of REDtone, a is nevertheless an important milestone in the
Malaysian operator and 2.3GHz WiMAX licence WiMAX industry. Th is is partly because 2.3GHz
Operators’ WiMAX wish list holder, said the current base station prices of product certifi cation will help clear the way for
Although many of the operator speakers expressed between $60,000 and $70,000 was “far too high” and certifi cation of more mainstream 2.5GHz and
enthusiasm for WiMAX, it wasn’t unqualifi ed. that the WiMAX eco-system “was not yet mature”. 3.5GHz products.”
SingTel’s Lew warned the WiMAX community that Zainal’s target base station price is between $30,000 Although the first batch of certified 2.3GHz
if WiMAX were to emerge victorious over LTE and $40,000. REDtone does not plan commercial products were ‘Wave 1’ (without MIMO and
(from the SingTel Group’s point of view) it would WiMAX service launch until 3Q 2008 (see REDtone smart antenna technology), the WiMAX Forum
have to prove that it could integrate ‘seamlessly’ case study, page 34). is planning to go straight to ‘Wave 2’ certification
with existing GSM, 3G and FTTH technologies. for 2.5GHz (for both 5MHz and 10MHz
“WiMAX has a little bit of a head start over LTE On the road to mobile certifi cation channels), which is scheduled to start during
and the WiMAX community needs to preserve that Operator and consumer confi dence in mobile 3Q 2008. Work on mobile product certification
lead and turn it into a commercial technology,” said WiMAX will increase as more mobile WiMAX in the 3.5GHz band is also expected to start in
Lew. “We need to be able to integrate and overlay products receive certifi cation. An industry earnest this year.
WiMAX into the existing infrastructure that service milestone was therefore reached at the Congress Th e WiMAX Forum reported in Singapore that
providers use for both fi xed and mobile.” Asia event when the WiMAX Forum announced 19 vendors had already submitted Wave 2 products
And given that WiMAX has still to achieve the fi rst batch of mobile WiMAX products (eight for certifi cation in the 2.5GHz frequency band.
signifi cant economies of scale, some operators in total) from four vendors (Samsung, Posdata, It estimates there will be more than 100 mobile
expressed concern about the high cost of CPE units Runcom and Sequans) to receive its offi cial stamp certifi ed products by the end of this year, rising to
and base stations. Rizwan Tiwana, CTO of Pakistan’s of approval. more than 1,000 by the end of 2011.
Wateen Telecom, pointed out that the price of a “Th is is a great day for the WiMAX ecosystem,” “We have over 62 companies developing silicon
DSL modem is around $25 whereas WiMAX CPE said Ron Resnick, chairman and president of the and end user devices, as well as 37 companies
is around $150-200 per unit. “Th e only way to WiMAX Forum. “[Certifi cation] gives choice for developing products for infrastructure,” said
drive down CPE cost is faster adoption of WiMAX service providers and end consumers, and with Resnick. “This shows a major [WiMAX]
globally,” said Rizwan, although he did add that the dozens of other products in line for certifi cation, it commitment by the vendor community, despite
WiMAX eco-system was gaining momentum. is a sign of a healthy ecosystem.” being in the nascent stage of the [mobile
Using the 3.5GHz frequency band, Wateen Mike Roberts, a principal analyst at Informa Internet] industry. We have a lead start of
Telecom’s WiMAX network covers 22 cities in Telecoms & Media, and conference chairman in two to three years over any other competing
Pakistan using equipment from Motorola. Th e Singapore, added: “Th e products are built to the technology.”
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