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The first certified implementation of mobile WiMAX has gone live in a deployment in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Idaho Falls, Idaho, using Alvarion gear. DigitalBridge Communications announced today that its Alvarion-built WiMAX network in Jackson Hole, Wyo., and Idaho Falls, Idaho, was now operational, supporting full mobility and high-speed hand-off.

It also plans to upgrade its other markets to mobility by the end of the year.

The local tv station had very interesting story that ran their live camera with sound through a laptop which connected (via WiFi) to the Alvarion client and to the television station. It was quite a demonstration, and a good story, showing connections all over town.

DigitalBridge said its current Jackson Hole audience area reaches some 3,000 homes and businesses. The company indicated it eventually wants to expand WiMax mobile capabilities throughout its 200,000-household deployment area.

DigitalBridge has built WiMAX networks in 14 smaller communities across the US using Alvarion’s now-WiMAX Forum-certified BreezeMAX gear, but Jackson Hole is the first market where it has turned on the mobility software.

The CPEs currently consist solely of Alvarion PC cards embedded with Beceem Communications chipsets, but DigitalBridge will be able to support virtually any mobile WiMAX client, CEO Kelley Dunne said.

DigitalBridge is using the same 2.5 GHz spectrum used by Sprint and Clearwire. It will depend on the much-larger Sprint-Clearwire deployment to create a market for the dedicated WiMAX handsets and embedded consumer electronics DigitalBridge hopes to sell and support.

Over the next 8 months, DigitalBridge plans to switch on the mobility features in its remaining 13 markets: Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Rexburg, Sun Valley and Twin Falls; Idaho; Connersville, Liberty, Washington and Vincennes; Ind.; Butte and Missoula; Mont.; Sioux Falls; S.D.; and Appomattox; Va. All of the markets are too small to be considered competitive with Sprint and Clearwire’s nationwide rollout.

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