Nortel expands WiMax strategy with Intel, Airspan

Nortel expands WiMax strategy with Intel, Airspan

Nortel will partner with Intel and Airspan Networks to offer mobile and fixed WiMAX wireless products.

Nortel said working with these two companies is expected to complement work already underway in Nortel's joint venture with LG Electronics. LG and Nortel are creating a joint-owned company, tentatively called LG-Nortel, that will combine LG's telecommunication infrastructure business and Nortel's distribution and service businesses in South Korea .

The two have already won a contract from a Korean service provider for equipment to support a mobile broadband service based on High-Speed Downlink Packet Access. LG-Nortel is also working on IEEE 802.16e-based WiMAX and Wireless Broadband (WiBro) products. WiBro is expected to offer speeds up to 1M bit/sec for devices traveling at up to 60 kilometers per hour.

Nortel said its WiMAX products will be designed to allow wireless and wireline carriers, cable providers, media companies and other ISPs to deliver broadband connectivity to consumer and enterprise users by leveraging existing networks and 'last mile' wireless links. They will also complement and extend the reach of existing 3G cellular networks, the company said.

Fixed WiMAX (IEEE 802.16-2004) is anticipated to operate in the 3.5 GHz and 5.8 GHz bands of spectrum and to deliver end-user data rates greater than 1M bit/sec. Mobile WiMAX (IEEE 802.16e) will initially operate in the 2.5 GHz band and provide higher speeds.

Nortel is collaborating with Intel to promote deployment of mobile wireless broadband based on WiMAX. Nortel will work with Airspan to market and evolve WiMAX products in the higher frequency bands for implementations that do not require full mobility.

These systems will also be used to eliminate the need for wired T-1/E-1 or DSL circuits for wireless backhaul. Nortel's optical backhaul technology, data networking systems and wireless services will be integrated with Airspan's WiMAX base transceiver stations and subscriber terminals.

Nortel's fixed WiMAX products are expected to be commercially available in the first quarter of 2006. Nortel's WiBro systems are scheduled for commercial availability following the 2005 field trial deployment in Asia with the LG-Nortel joint venture, with additional mobile WiMAX products set to be commercially available following the 2006 trials in North America.

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