updated 04:40 pm EDT, Mon March 24, 2008
australian wimax closed
Australia's WiMAX pioneer, Buzz Broadband, closed its network, with the operator's CEO publicly calling the technology a "disaster" that "failed miserably." The speech took place at the WiMAX World Asia Conference & Expo in Bangkok on March 19, according to reports. Garth Freeman went on to say the wireless broadband technology's indoor performance was limited to about a quarter mile, while he called non-line-of-sight capabilities, at just over 1.2 miles, "non-existent." Latency reached as much as 1 second, which makes the technology useless for Internet applications and VoIP. The latter was a major selling point for customers to make the switch to Buzz Broadband.
Freeman supported his arguments with the fact most WiMAX utilities are still in trial stages, used by start-up carriers and supported by "second-tier vendors." This could act as a warning to Sprint, which is planning its own WiMAX network dubbed Xohm.
Last year's conference witnessed Freeman praise the technology, which his company employed just a few months earlier. The only concern he had then was the limited indoor coverage, an issue mirrored by India's VSNL, which reported indoor loss at just 660 feet from the base station at a different conference last year.
Buzz Broadband went back to supplying a more traditional solution in the 1.9GHz TD-CDMA standard as well as a wireless DOCSIS platform.