WiMAX World: Alcatel-Lucent partners with Kyocera

The WiMAX ecosystem once was full of companies that provided turnkey network infrastructure and device portfolios, but with the increasing popularity of the technology, that’s changing. Some infrastructure vendors are focusing on what they do best, while letting their consumer electronic partners exploit their own talents.

That has been Alcatel-Lucent’s intention since it got into WiMAX in late 2004, and a joint venture partnership with Kyocera it announced this week at WiMAX World lives up to that intention. The companies said they will work together on an end-to-end system using Alcatel-Lucent’s Universal WiMAX platform and Kyocera multi-mode mobile phones, PC cards and USB devices that rivals other single-vendor turnkey approaches. The end-to-end system will be ready during the first half of next year.

“We don’t want to be a CPE vendor, but we want to strengthen the ecosystem for devices,” said Michael Seymour, vice president of partnerships at Alcatel-Lucent’s WiMAX Business Unit. Seymour said the network equipment vendor tests its own system interoperability with as many devices as possible to give carriers more flexibility.