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New WiMax Standards Set

Another sign WiMax, the faster and cheaper alternative for wireless Internet access, will soon become a reality: Chipmakers and manufacturers can get to work on new tech toys, thanks to recently approved standards that include mobility support.

Although the 802.16e standard was approved in October, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers gave their final OK last week, officially opening the door to industry-wide adoption, interoperability among different wireless vendors and innovation.

At its peak, WiMax provides download speeds as high as 20 megabits per second, a huge improvement compared to current WiFi speeds that top out at 700 kilobits per second. That said, the wireless reach of WiMax doesn't compare to cellular phone networks, but that hasn't stopped Sprint from testing it so they can improve their Web surfing capabilities.

Already, Motorola and Intel have announced collaborative plans to spped up the adoption process that could give consumers WiMax access as soon as next year.

CNET News.com December 8, 2005

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