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To the WiMAX

A new protocol spices up the 802.x alphabet soup.

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This story appears in the December 2003 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

There's a new networking protocol on the block. Intel and Alvarion, a wireless broadband networking infrastructure provider, are among several firms collaborating on interchangeable equipment that uses the 802.16a protocol for wireless broadband access. This standard supports data broadcasts of 70Mbps for 30 miles, rather than the 300 feet of 802.11 protocols.

Interoperability among brands could spell lower equipment costs, making last-mile WiMAX connections cheaper than cable and DSL solutions, says Intel marketing manager Margaret LaBrecque. WiMAX equipment could cost less than a quarter of current technology, with prices starting under $2,000.

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