July 30, 2012, 2:19 PM — This vendor-written tech primer has been edited by Network World to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favor the submitter's approach.
Wi-Fi is a seasoned, accessible solution for business, while 4G is still being refined for enterprise-specific needs but appears to hold great promise as a low-latency protocol that can support critical enterprise applications, a necessity in the "business everywhere" enterprise of today.
But this perception of a "war" does not actually hold water. While some analysts tabbed 4G as a Wi-Fi killer, carriers and wireless operators remained quiet on the subject, portraying it more as a companion or parallel service in many cases. Why this silence when it comes to taking on 4G's rival headfirst? Because the next big thing in cellular could actually be Wi-Fi.
LTE SPECTRUM: How much do the big carriers have?
Often taken for granted, at least by businesses outside of the service industry, is the fact that many wireless carriers and operators already offer Wi-Fi service, albeit on a hotspot/location limited basis. Starbucks coffee shops, for example, are AT&T free Wi-Fi zones, while many airports and other public venues offer similar offerings through Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon.