Log in

View Full Version : Is WiMAX Going to Kill WiFi?


Jason Dunn
08-11-2003, 07:00 PM
<div class='os_post_top_link'><a href='http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=10394' target='_blank'>http://www.theinquirer.net/?article=10394</a><br /><br /></div>"Intel has called 802.16 "the most important thing since the Internet itself", and even allowing for a dose of self-serving, it is not talking entirely in hyperbole. WiMAX will extend the potential of Wi-Fi to far longer distances around 30 miles. It is important, and is evolving at the speed of light (in standards terms anyway), but this rapid development is at the cost of the agenda being dominated by two already over-powerful vendors, Intel and Nokia. <br /><br />WiMAX is showing off its first system profiles and interoperability tests at the the [sic] WCA annual conference in Washington DC this week, in a significant step towards making the 802.16a standard, ratified by the IEEE in March, a commercial technology. While a fully mobile version of WiMAX is in the wings, this first release will cover fixed wireless, and its supporters are focusing in particular on broadband last mile in unwired areas, and on backhaul for hotspots. Intel will start to make WMan chips this year and we should see WiMAX products early in 2004."<br /><br />Wow. 8O You have to go check out this article by Caroline Gabriel - I can't believe we didn't post about this last month! I'm always dubious of new "standards", because more often than not they result in market confusion and sluggish adoption. It will take a few years for WiiMAX [sic] to become a reality (barring any serious issues), but when it does, I can forsee this potentially changing the wireless, and even land-line broadband landscape.<br /><br />On a different note, am I the only one who thinks both The Register and The Inquirer should hire professional copy editors? It seems like every article I read on those sites has one or more typos. Not like here of course. :lol:

Gremmie
08-11-2003, 07:14 PM
The Register employs some of the world's worst spellers, and even worse proof readers. So asking us our position on US v. UK spelling conventions seems a little redundant . But as you ask, here is our official position - our American-based writers and US-based content partners use American spelling; and our British-based writers and British-based content partners use English English spelling. There's consistency for you, and no we're not going to change. So we're cosmopolitan. Live with it.

Well at least they admit it :wink:

pradike
08-11-2003, 08:14 PM
"Intel has called 802.16 "the most important thing since the Internet itself", and even allowing for a dose of self-serving, it is not talking entirely in hyperbole. WiMAX will extend the potential of Wi-Fi to far longer distances around 30 miles. It is important, and is evolving at the speed of light (in standards terms anyway), but this rapid development is at the cost of the agenda being dominated by two already over-powerful vendors, Intel and Nokia. :lol: :roll:

If this is alll true...holy moley...this is a security nightmare. We're still all somewhat unprotected after 10 years of "putting security" on the WEB....and now you want to radiate this out 30 miles via WIFI....

This seems like the mother of all security holes for hackers.

Mojo Jojo
08-11-2003, 08:33 PM
Well if you can deploy enough of them so that coverage converges, then pass info from zone to zone in an adressable nature... you could create a internet backbone with no land lines.

Possibly bringing the internet to areas where there is no previous infrastructure, much like cell phones are now a better choice for developing communications where there is no land line infustructure currently in place.

peterg
08-11-2003, 09:30 PM
Now this is cool, not only will I be able to war-drive in my own neighbourhood, I'll be able to do it for every unprotected access point in 30 miles!

I'll never have to buy internet again!

CameronK
08-11-2003, 09:57 PM
I seriously doubt that this will be a standard consumer product if its broadcast radius is 30 miles, so I also doubt you'll be walking around your neighborhood finding these access points.

absolutVenky
08-11-2003, 09:59 PM
Now this is cool, not only will I be able to war-drive in my own neighbourhood, I'll be able to do it for every unprotected access point in 30 miles!

I'll never have to buy internet again!

WiMax will largely be offered by service providers on licensed spectrum and will targt proprietary LMDS and MMDS solutions as well as hotspot backhaul. While the technology will also find its way into end-user devices it will be a managed environment - much like cellular networks.

ctmagnus
08-11-2003, 10:40 PM
Now this is cool, not only will I be able to war-drive in my own neighbourhood, I'll be able to do it for every unprotected access point in 30 miles!

I'll never have to buy internet again!

:twak: Bad wardriver! Bad! Bad!

Please look here (http://www.renderlab.net/projects/wardrive/ethics.html).

ctmagnus
08-11-2003, 10:42 PM
While the technology will also find its way into end-user devices it will be a managed environment - much like cellular networks.

I was just going to say "Cellular Wi-Fi".

How big is a (phone) cell, anyways?

shindullin
08-12-2003, 12:27 AM
What the heck is wardriving and why would this new wireless sytem be vulnerable/accessable to wardriving?

beq
08-12-2003, 05:18 AM
So will direct enduser access to WiMAX eventually be widespread (i.e. built-in to Intel's Centrino, Nokia's cellphones, etc), or remained confined to specific uses such as interlinking backbone for WiFi hotspots (which would still provide the direct enduser access)? If the former, will the WiMAX portion providing the enduser access still be hard-segmented into non-interoperable segments (i.e. the diff extensions like the various bands at 2-11GHz, etc)?

Anyways w/ direct enduser access to the long-range and handover-able spec, could be a real threat to cellular 3G. WiFi will still have a place though for endusers wanting their own private base stations...

P.S. I feel like in the Twilight Zone, for some reason I'd gotten it in my head that The Inquirer was some British entertainment-news online tabloid, turns out it's a tech news site like The Register? And this author sounds like an expert or must've done her homework, for a sec I thought I was reading 802.11, er, Wi-Fi Planet (the layout even looks similar) :D

hollis_f
08-12-2003, 05:59 AM
What the heck is wardriving and why would this new wireless sytem be vulnerable/accessable to wardriving?

:google:

SassKwatch
08-12-2003, 07:15 AM
I seriously doubt that this will be a standard consumer product if its broadcast radius is 30 miles, so I also doubt you'll be walking around your neighborhood finding these access points.
But we'll all be able to enjoy the carcinogenic effects. :mrgreen:

shindullin
08-12-2003, 06:19 PM
Ok, Google suggestion in hand I did a little research and was surprised to learn that accding to the register Wardriving is a a new form of cracking, particularly prevalent in Silicon Valley. How prevalent is it? If wifi is so easily broken into that script kiddies can register wo a breaking a sweat, what makes people think that WiMAX protocols will be any safer? Sounds like we're opening ourselves up to a hacker's wet dream if we implement wireless networks 30 miles in radius that form a new backbone for the internet wo the security protocols necessary to keep it stable and secure. Also, if WiMAX shares the same security problems as Wifi and then became so popular that it replaced 3g networks it doesn't sound like it would be too hard for a BinLaden type to cripple the entire world's communications network. They've already proven that they have patience, money, and extensive planning capabilities. Are these concerns legit or am I pulling a chicken little and saying that the sky is falling?

Kati Compton
08-12-2003, 06:55 PM
Are these concerns legit or am I pulling a chicken little and saying that the sky is falling?

They are legit to some extent, but if you think about it, everyone can get internet access SOMEWHERE. So even though this might make it *easier*, if someone wants to do something bad, they'll find another way anyway.

The only other concern I see is someone developing a way to cause interference in the signals so people can't connect, but then again, they could find a way to take down the phone system, etc, anyway if they really wanted to.

hawkeye
08-12-2003, 07:05 PM
Don't forget that many of us in the US still can't get broadband. :cry: So here's to hoping WiMAX will cover the 'last mile' to my house. :clap: