Dissatisfaction in Convergence? LTE Beats WiMax

Verizon's 4G choice wins in battle for next generation wireless.

Looks like the picture of the future of cellular mobile/wireless communications is getting very slightly clearer.

After half a dozen years of expectation that WiMax would become the new high-bandwidth, long-distance wireless standard, the resignation of Sprint from the board of ClearWire -- a separate company half-owned by Sprint and hobbled with the job of rolling out WiMax as an alternative to Verizon's LTE -- and the failure of a deal with T-Mobile may kill WiMax entirely.

Meanwhile, Verizon -- praised by as having the least-poor network of the major carriers and damned for nearly everything else -- is pushing hardon the rollout of its CDMA-replacement/enhancement LTE network (though it's now getting some direct competition even in LTE).

That may make the choice of network protocols easier for corporations signing up for long-term mobile/wireless contracts, but it doesn't put IT in a good negotiating position. Verizon earned its reputation for enraging customers, charging all the traffic will bear for basic functions and a premium on top for anything else -- and killing or restricting functions in both hardware and software if it wants to offer its own versions for yet another premium.

As mobile/wireless becomes a bigger part of corporate IT, having just one major networking standard will make some things easier, but I don't expect anyone to enjoy it.

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