Intel is teaming up with telecommunications service provider KDDI to launch a WiMax network in Japan. Intel said it has joined a joint venture called Wireless Broadband Planning K.K. (WBPK) that will seek to obtain a license from the Japanese government to operate a wireless network utilizing WiMax technology.
The other WBPK members include Kyocera, Daiwa Securities Group, the East Japan Railway, and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi. Intel has a 17.65% stake in the venture with KDDI slated to have a 32.26% stake, according to media reports from Japan.
KDDI is the second largest mobile phone service provider in Japan. It has been a longtime supporter of WiMax, and uses CDMA technology for its cellular network. The Mobile WiMAX venture is targeting the 2.5-GHz frequency.
A Sampling of WiMAX Rollouts
|Clearwire||U.S. & International||2004|
|Wimax-Telecom||Central & Eastern Europe||2005|
|KT Telecom||South Korea||2006|
|SK Telecom||South Korea||2006|
|Sprint Xohm||United States||2007|
NTT DoCoMo, the largest Japanese wireless service provider, and ACCA Networks have created another WiMax partnership in Japan. The Japanese government has said it expects to award two WiMax network licenses by the end of the year.
Sprint and Clearwire are teaming up for a $5 billion WiMax build-out in the United States by 2010. Intel CEO Paul Otellini said he expects “150 million people will be covered by WiMax in 2008, 750 million in 2010 and 1.3 billion in 2012.”