Intel has a white paper (pdf) that argues, “only Mobile WiMAX can transport DSL and cable-like services cost-effectively in a mobile environment”.
The paper was prepared by WiMAX supporters on behalf of the WiMAX Forum. The paper compares HSDPA, HSUPA, EVDO Rev A, and EVDO Rev B (using duplex 2 Ghz cellular channels) with Mobile WiMAX (using simplex 2.5 GHz channels). Unsurprisingly, Mobile WiMAX compares favorably with advanced CDMA technologies in this technical comparison.
Mobile WiMAX is based on OFDM/OFDMA technology. It is said to have better resource allocation, better uplink efficiency, and can support a full range of advanced antenna technologies. These capabilities provide significant advantages in spectral efficiency and better QoS in both the downlink and uplink.
Mobile WiMAX can also dynamically adjust downlink/uplink ratio. In contrast, EVDO and HSPA, based on FDD, have a fixed asymmetric downlink/uplink ratio and fixed FDD channel bandwidths.
Other points include:
- Subchannels allow maximize spectrum utilization. All these wireless broadband technologies support a frequency reuse of one, i.e. all cells/sectors operate on one frequency channel. However, due to heavy interference between sectors, users at the cell edge may suffer low connection quality. 1xEVDO and HSPA address the interference issue by adjusting the loading of the network…but it’s applied to all users within the sector.
WiMAX users operate on sub-channels, so the cell edge interference problem can be easily addressed by dynamic reconfiguration. Edge users can operate using fewer (but more powerful) sub-channels. It can be adaptively optimized with no frequency planning required.
- Advanced Antenna Technology. CDMA-based 1xEVDO and HSPA support simple transmit diversity and the HSPA standard has an option to support Beamforming. In general however, the use of advanced antenna technologies in current 1xEVDO and HSPA solutions has been limited.
Mobile WiMAX, on the other hand, is based on smart antenna friendly OFDM/OFDMA technology. OFDM/OFDMA systems make it easier to support smart antenna technologies. The single frequency makes it cheaper and more practical. Complex equalizers are not required to compensate frequency selective fading. Mobile WiMAX supports a full range of smart antenna technologies to enhance performance including Beamforming, Space/Time Coding (STC) and Spacial Multiplexing (SM). These techniques improve both system coverage and capacity.
- High Data Rates with QOS. MIMO antenna techniques with flexible sub-channelization schemes and Advanced Coding and Modulation enable the Mobile WiMAX technology to support peak DL sector data rates up to 46 Mbps, assuming a DL/UL ratio of 3:1, and peak UL sector data rates up to 14 Mbps, assuming a DL/UL ratio of 1:1, in a 10 MHz channel. As opposed to priority-based QoS schemes in CDMA, Mobile WiMAX supports guaranteed service levels including committed and peak information rates, latency, and jitter for varied types of traffic on a customer-by-customer basis.
- Scalability. Mobile WiMAX is designed to be able to scale to work in different channelizations from 1.25 to 20 MHz to comply with varied worldwide requirements as efforts proceed to achieve spectrum harmonization in the longer term. This also allows diverse economies to realize benefits for their specific geographic needs, such as providing affordable internet access in rural settings or enhancing the capacity of mobile broadband access in metro and suburban areas.
The simulations show Mobile WiMAX has a distinct advantage over the 3G enhancements in both spectral efficiency and channel/sector throughput. The spectral efficiency for Mobile WiMAX with MIMO is more than 2 times better than EVDO Rev B and HSPA in both downlink and uplink and, in the same bandwidth, the sector throughput is more than 2 times higher in the DL and about 2 times higher in the UL.
A range comparison was not included and would have been helpful. Still, you have to wonder why the FCC wants to “kill” OFDMA in the AWS auction if Mobile WiMAX is supposed to be so much more efficient.
Covad, along with Korea Telecom, TeleKom Malaysia and PCCW are members of the WiBro and mobile WiMAX Community which plans interoperability between WiBro and Mobile WiMAX.
According to Verizon Wireless’ latest terms of agreement, its “Unlimited” BroadbandAccess services cannot be used for:
- “uploading, downloading or streaming of movies, music or games,
- “with server devices or with host computer applications, including, but not limited to, Web camera posts or broadcasts, automatic data feeds, Voice over IP (VoIP), automated machine-to-machine connections, or peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing”
- “as a substitute or backup for private lines or dedicated data connections.”
How long until $99 USB Mobile WiMAX dongles are everywhere? How long until other countries get wireless broadband (with voice) at twice the speed for half the cost compared to the United States?
One election cycle.
The FCC’s Kevin Martin and the NTIA’s Michael Gallagher are on the hot seat. The U.S. Senate Friday confirmed Robert McDowell as the newest member of the FCC to re-establish a Republican majority.
It won’t help. The key is competition.
Related DailyWirless articles include; AWS Auction: Does It Suck?, Mobile WiMAX: It’s Done, 3G Band Scam?, HSDPA: Operation Grand Slam?, HSDPA Deployments Cingular Push to Talk, Cell Vs City Clouds: The Battle Begins, T-Mobile’s HSDPA Move, Verizon Expands EV-DO, Cuts Price, Verizon Tests Rev A, Sprint Rolls Out EV-DO, Cingular’s 3G Network, Sprint + Lucent for EV-DO, Jacobs: Cellular Beats WiMax, Verizon Tests Rev A, Finland Goes Flarion, Qualcomm Buys Flarion, T-Mobile’s HSDPA Move, HSPDA in China, Verizon Expands EV-DO, Cuts Price, Sprint Rolls Out EV-DO, Verizon EV-DO in Seattle, Portland & NYC, HSPDA Tests, 3G: HSPDA or Not?, CDMA vs OFDM, Mobile WiMax: It’s Alive!, 16e: Backward Compatibility – NOT, Flarion Testing WiFi Handoff, Banning Broadband Everywhere, City Clouds Save Money, Mobile WiMax – Now?, Laptop with EDGE, HSPDA & WiMax Living Together?, WiMax Over Hyped?, HSPDA Demos, Sprint Commits to EV-DO, Verizon Expands EV-DO, Cuts Price, 3G: HSDPA or Not?, and Cellular At The Races.