The International Telecommunication Union (ITU-R) has included WiMAX technology (doc) in the official IMT-2000 set of global telecommunications standards. The decision puts WiMAX on par with other ITU standards such as W-CDMA, CDMA-2000, and TD-SCDMA and escalates opportunities for global deployment.
With WiMax now a part of the IMT-2000 family of 3G standards, operators may deploy networks in markets where spectrum is allocated specifically to IMT technologies, especially in the 2.5-2.69 GHz band notes Unstrung. (See WiMax Gets ITU Standards Boost). Global frequency harmonization around the 2.5 GHz spectrum could also allow world-wide interoperability and create economies of scale not seen since Europe rallied around GSM in the late 1980s.
“This is a very special and unique milestone for WiMAX technology,” said Ron Resnick, president of the WiMAX Forum. “This is the first time that a new air interface has been added to the IMT-2000 set of standards since the original technologies were selected nearly a decade ago. WiMAX technology currently has the potential to reach 2.7 billion people. And today’s announcement expands the reach to a significantly larger global population.”
“I am immensely gratified that the international community, through ITU, has recognized the significance of the IEEE 802.16 WirelessMAN standard,” said Roger B. Marks, Chair of the IEEE 802.16 Working Group.
Originally created to harmonize 3G mobile systems and to increase opportunities for worldwide interoperability, the IMT-2000 family of standards will now support four different access technologies, including OFDMA (includes WiMAX), FDMA, TDMA and CDMA.
“With WiMAX technology now included, said Resnick, it places us on equal footing with the legacy-based technologies ITU-R already endorses.” The bottom line is that operators across the globe now have the freedom to select the right technology to best meet their business and regional needs.”
In related news, The World Radiocommunication Conference 2007 (WRC-07), will be held 22 October – 16 November 2007 in Geneva. Radiocommunications authorities around the world convene every 3 or 4 years to coordinate radio frequency use. The last World Conference was in 2003.
WRC-07 will revise the Radio Regulations, coordinate the use of the radio-frequency spectrum and satellite orbits, and deal with radiocommunication questions of a worldwide character.
The agenda contains about 30 items related to terrestrial and space radio services and applications. The U.S. Federal Communications Commission has several proposals to the ITU.
ITU is the global focal point for governments and the private sector. The United Nations agency spans 3 core sectors: radiocommunication, standardization and development. The Radiocommunication Assembly 2007 sessions are webcast through the ITU’s Webcast Service in English, French, Spanish, Russian, Arabic and Chinese channels.