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Worldwide WiMAX Equipment Forecast

While the first officially certified equipment is not expected to see the light of day for at least another four months, operators are rushing to embrace WiMAX technology as a broadband alternative and backhaul solution. According to new statistics from Infonetics Research, worldwide WiMAX equipment revenue will grow to US$124.5 million this year, up from an almost negligible $16.4 million in 2004, and is likely to hit $1 billion within the next three years. Having just launched its certification program in Spain, the WiMAX Forum has been desperate to cement the credibility of its efforts in general and 802.16 technology in particular. In the recent past the Forum has battled revelations from major WiMAX developer, Alvarion, that the industry is not ready for the certification programme and recently held a major product showcase event in Canada to "prove that WiMAX is real." According to Infonetics, while revenues still pale in comparison of those for other fixed and wireless solutions such as DSL and Wi-Fi, the operator market is now ready to accept WiMAX, certified or not. The group notes significant early deployments as a backhaul solution and says that operators will more rapidly embrace the technology once new mobility applications become available.

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