Intel, Alcatel team up on WiMax

Intel Corp. and French telecommunications equipment manufacturer Alcatel SA are working together on the emerging WiMax wireless technology in an effort to deliver products using WiMax by the second half of 2005, the companies said Thursday.

"The announcement with Alcatel demonstrates the momentum from Wi-Fi to WiMax," said Intel spokesman Mark Miller.

WiMax is a metropolitan area networking technology based on the IEEE 802.16 family of standards. The upcoming wireless technology operates over tens of kilometers and could provide an alternative "last mile" connection for homes and businesses or bring fixed wireless broadband to areas that lack landlines.

Intel, in Santa Clara, California, will work with the Paris-based Alcatel on the definition, standardization, development, integration and marketing of WiMax end-to-end solutions, Miller said.

Financial details for the strategic alliance between Intel and Alcatel were not disclosed. Representatives from Alcatel could not immediately be reached for comment.

Intel announced a similar deal with German electronics and engineering giant Siemens AG on Monday. As part of that agreement, Intel will work with the Siemens Information and Communication Mobile unit on the development of WiMax base-station infrastructure equipment as well as end-user subscriber station devices, with plans for introducing complete WiMax radio networks by the second half of 2005.

According to Miller, additional WiMax strategic alliances with other companies can be expected in the near future. "Our objective is to speed the deployment WiMax far and wide," Miller said.

In January, Intel laid out its plans for producing WiMax chips at the Wireless Communications Association (WCA) International Technical Symposium & Business Expo in San Jose, California.

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