WiMax Forum Embraces TD-LTE

This week at the 4G World Conference & Exposition (news and conference program), the WiMAX Forum announced an updated industry roadmap.

The WiMAX Forum is embracing the TD-LTE standard. The WiMax Forum confirmed reports to Rethink Wireless that its board had unanimously approved a proposal to add TD-LTE support to the upcoming WiMAX 2.1 specifications, at a meeting a few weeks ago.

The WiMAX Advanced standard will effectively merge WiMax 2.0 spec and its closest rival, Time Division LTE into a single new specification. That spec will be ready in draft form by year end and ratified in early 2013.

The WiMAX Forum has largely stopped discussing its next generation 802.16m standard, aka WiMAX 2.0, according to Rethink Wireless. It is now promoting the WiMAX Advanced extension as well as specialized subsets such as WiGrid, which is tailored for utilities.

Operators with software programmable dual-mode base stations would be able to support both WiMAX and TD-LTE devices. The standards-based approach could be incorporated more easily a single device. The aim will be to make a dual-mode WiMAX/LTE platform simpler and more cost effective and help operators to migrate to LTE in a gradual way.

“What we don’t want to suggest is this announcement is opening the floodgates of a migration from WiMAX to other technologies,” said Declan Byrne, President of the WiMAX Forum.

Meanwhile, Infonetics Research will present a paper on “Why TD-LTE will take over the world”, at the LTE North America 2012 conference, on the 14-15th November 2012 in Texas.

Previous WiMAX supporters like Yota in Russia, Clearwire in the US and Packet One in Malaysia have already made the move TD-LTE coexistence.

T-Mobile USA will use LTE-A from NSN and Ericsson in their $4 billion 4G network upgrade across 37,000 cell sites using their (paired) AWS frequencies.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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