|3.5G WiMAX v. HSDPA|
WiMAX v HSDPA: The Battle for 3.5G
27 Aug 2008
For the usually quiet month of August, there has been a fair amount of network contract activity over the past few days, more than half of which have been for the deployment of WiMAX technology. This week, we take at how the two 3.5G technologies – HSPA and WiMAX – have fared so far this year.
The first point to note is that there has been roughly four times the amount of announced WiMAX contracts as HSPA contracts. These WiMAX deployments are spread evenly throughout the globe. The fact there’s as many deployments in Africa & The Middle East as there are in Europe, or as many in South America as in North America is a testament to WiMAX’s strong presence in developing regions. The operators awarding these contracts also cross a broad range, from established Telcos like O2 and KDDI, to newly established national WiMAX license holders like Colombia’s Emcali, to niche WISPs like the Metranet in the UK.
The deployment of HSPA is more conventional, with just under half of the announced contracts this year coming from Europe. Contracts awarded in Africa & The Middle East have been restricted to Saudi Arabia & Egypt. Unsurprisingly, the companies awarding these HSPA contracts are established cellular operators like Vodafone, Claro and Zain, with a few exceptions like new companies Tusmobil in Slovenia and Mara Telecom in French Polynesia.
The range of equipment vendors is also a key point of difference between WiMAX and HSPA. WiDAR has this year identified roughly 20 different WiMAX vendors, from specialist providers like Alvarion and Redline, to established network equipment vendors like Motorola and ZTE. For HSPA, WiDAR has this year identified contracts going solely to the established network providers Nokia Siemens, Ericsson, Huawei, Motorola and ZTE. ###
- Eric -