This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book. | June 2008 | 5
Reliance pledges Sprint and Samsung
$500m for WiMAX ready to go
Reliance Globalcom, a subsidiary of 75 percent of global population in Sprint has announced that business unit and brand name for
India’s Reliance Communications, combination with Reliance Global- Samsung has met its commercial the service. “The collaboration
has acquired a controlling stake in com’s 15,000km fully IP-enabled acceptance criteria for mobile with Samsung and our other part-
eWave World, a UK-headquartered optic network spread across six WiMAX, which looks at overall ners has created a WiMAX eco-
telco focused on WiMAX rollout in continents.” performance, handoff perform- system that has now proven that it
emerging markets. Jay Metcalfe, eWave World ance and handoff delay. can deliver this new technology to
Through its stake in eWave co-founder and chairman, added: Samsung is building out mo- the marketplace well ahead of any
World, Reliance Globalcom says “With the backing of Reliance, bile WiMAX networks for Sprint feasible alternative.”
it will commit up to US$500m eWave World will deliver broadband in Baltimore and Washington In April 2008 Samsung an-
over the next two to three years in services to business and residential DC. Since finalising a supply nounced the introduction of
building and acquiring WiMAX customers in numerous emerging agreement in 2007, Samsung several WiMAX-enabled devices:
networks in the emerging markets markets. We consider this represents and Sprint have steadily made the Express Card (E100 PC Card)
of Asia, Europe, Latin America and a very significant opportunity for progress on the extensive project and WiMAX embedded UMPC
Africa. both eWave World and the countries with previous key milestones, (Q1 Ultra Premium Mobile PC).
“The acquisition of eWave World in which we plan to invest.” including first data session in the Sprint has yet to put a date on
is a significant step forward in The price of Reliance Globalcom ‘s lab (June 2007), first data session when it will launch commercial
Reliance Communications’ global equity stake in eWave World was not on the live network (October WiMAX, although a company
growth strategy to directly reach disclosed. 2007) and successful interopera- spokesperson says it will be be-
out to millions of customers, both bility testing with multiple other fore the formation of the new
corporate and individual,” said device vendors (April 2008). Clearwire, which, if given regula-
Reliance Globalcom CEO Punit “This is a major step towards tory approval, will happen during
Garg in a press statement. launch readiness and Sprint is 4Q 2008.
“The 4G WiMAX network extremely pleased with the per- It is not yet clear whether the
in 50 countries would en- formance of the mobile WiMAX Xohm brand name will be retained
able us to offer the most network and access devices from or not. “That will be up to the new
diverse and unmatched Samsung,” says Barry West, presi- Clearwire management to decide,”
suite of services to over dent of Xohm, Sprint’s WiMAX says the Sprint spokesperson.
Hong Kong to award WiMAX trial
three WiMAX licences expansion in Israel
Details of the WiMAX licences Israeli operator 012 Smile.Com- a licence for a fixed WiMAX trial
(frequency band and spectrum munications has applied to the in March 2007. Later, the com-
allocation) as well as the bidding country’s Ministry of Communi- pany, in partnership with Alvarion
procedure (auction or beauty con- cations to expand its licence for and Intel, expanded the trial to
test) have not yet been finalised. mobile WiMAX trials in the Tel bring WiMAX-based Internet and
Hong Kong is one of the most Aviv-Ramat Gan area, which is telephony services to the city of
competitive telecom markets in Israel’s most densely populated Sderot.
the world. The island has a popula- business and residential centre. “We view mobile WiMAX as
tion of 6.9 million and 2.3 million Through the trial, the company an important technology for sup-
households, but there are five plans to provide users with an porting a portion of the mobile
Hong Kong is reportedly going mobile network operators and ten Internet connectivity rate of up services that we intend to roll out
to issue three WiMAX licences fixed-line infrastructure providers. to 10Mbps, a speed sufficient to in the future, and our Tel Aviv
before the year is out. A long list As of January 2008, mobile pen- support both mobile telephony and trial is one more link in a chain
of Tier One vendors is monitor- etration in Hong Kong stood at 152 a variety of internet-based applica- of the activities that are prepar-
ing closely the planned release of percent and household broadband tions. The trial will utilise WiMAX ing us to launch countrywide
the licences. These include Nokia penetration was 76.4 percent. technology provided by Alvarion. services,” says Ms. Stella Hendler,
Siemens Networks, Alcatel-Lu- There were nearly 7,000 public 012 Smile.Communications was president and CEO of 012 Smile.
cent, Motorola, Nortel Networks, wifi access points on the island by the first Israeli company to receive Communications.
Huawei and ZTE. the end of March 2008.
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