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You Can Run . . .

But you can't hide--at least you won't be able to when the world goes wireless. What will the Wi-Fi revolution mean for your business?

By Mike Hogan

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Consider this: Pretty soon, you won't be out of touch withthe office ever again. It won't matter whether you'researching for enlightenment in the Himalayas, a suntan in Polynesiaor a sale in Kabul. Internet access points are planned for allthose places--as well as coffee shops, hotels and other heavilytrafficked points in between. There will still be places to hideout, but not in the airplanes flying overhead. Internet access iscoming to air travelers with 802.11-enabled (Wi-Fi) notebooks, too.Never having to miss a single e-mail or afternoon-longvideoconference has its good and bad points, of course.Connectivity increases your opportunity to work anywhere, at anytime, but it also interrupts you while on vacation. Think of it asa continuation of your pager and cellphone experiences--times10.

It won't happen tomorrow or next week, and wirelessnesswon't replace the wired network, an indispensable backhaul forhigh-speed communications. But it may accomplish something that theFCC has failed miserably at--loosening the Baby Bells'stranglehold on the "last mile" of communications.Unregulated wireless bands offer would-be ISPs the opportunity toend-run entrenched telecom interests--not just with Wi-Fi, but alsowith fixed wireless and other radio types.

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