Intel unveils $1.1B WiMax trial in Taiwan

Intel is teaming with Taiwan's Ministry of Economic Affairs for a $1.1 billion contract for the M-Taiwan (Mobilize Taiwan) project. The Taiwanese government will decide spectrum allocation for WiMax, and the ministry will help Intel with field trials until 2009. It will also give incentives to enterprises that choose to participate in future commercial rollouts of WiMax. Intel claims 13 new WiMax installations commercially available in Europe, South America and North Asia. Ten more are on the way by the end of this year. Alvarion, Airspan, Alcatel and Redline Communications are helping with Intel's installations. The company also plans to launch WiMax-enabled chips for desktops and laptops by 2008.

Analysts are criticizing Intel for labeling the WiMax technology a "success" already, before it has officially launched or even been approved of as a standard. WiMax would compete with and/or complement 3G networks or the technology could falter like other WiFi-like technologies of the past.

For more on Intel's WiMax plans:
- check out this article from CNET