Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Last week Motorola said it would help build the world's largest planned network based on 802.16e. The network will be built in Pakistan by Pakistani company Wateen Telecom. Patrick Donegan of Heavy Reading reports that Wateen planned to deploy Motorola's MOTOwi4 technology at 193 sites by the end of September this year and 600 by the end of June 2007. The Pakistani carrier plans to use the network to provide voice, wireless broadband, Internet access, and IP VPN services. Donegan points out that this is the first planned large-scale 802.16e network, and that the project is significant for Motorola, a company which "bet the farm on WiMAX" (more precisely, on 802.16e).
The project's significance is matched by the difficulties it poses for both companies. Wateen Telecom will deploy a MOTOwi4 WiMAX access network and subscriber units backed up by a core IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) Network (itself a new and relatively untried technology, also to be supplied by Motorola). All this is "very leading edge," says Donegan. "A big question is whether 802.16e is ready for this type of roll out. It's a relatively immature technology and any vendor would struggle to execute under these conditions."
PLUS: Motorola continues to show its WiMAX leadership with the latest addition to its MOTOwi4 portfolio of wireless broadband solutions. At WiMAX World Europe, Motorola's new carrier-class WiMAX network will perform rich media downloads and video streaming through a laptop PC using a third-party PCMCIA card which incorporates an 802.16e chip from Beceem Communications. Report