Email Delivery

Receive new posts as email.

Email address

Syndicate this site

RSS | Atom


About This Site
Contact Us
Privacy Policy


November 2010
Sun Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30        

Stories by Category

Basics :: Basics
Casting :: Casting Listen In Podcasts Videocasts
Culture :: Culture Hacking
Deals :: Deals
Future :: Future
Hardware :: Hardware Adapters Appliances Chips Consumer Electronics Gaming Home Entertainment Music Photography Video Gadgets Mesh Monitoring and Testing PDAs Phones Smartphones
Industry :: Industry Conferences Financial Free Health Legal Research Vendor analysis
International :: International
Media :: Media Locally cached Streaming
Metro-Scale Networks :: Metro-Scale Networks Community Networking Municipal
Network Types :: Network Types Broadband Wireless Cellular 2.5G and 3G 4G Power Line Satellite
News :: News Mainstream Media
Politics :: Politics Regulation Sock Puppets
Schedules :: Schedules
Security :: Security 802.1X
Site Specific :: Site Specific Administrative Detail April Fool's Blogging Book review Cluelessness Guest Commentary History Humor Self-Promotion Unique Wee-Fi Who's Hot Today?
Software :: Software Open Source
Spectrum :: Spectrum 60 GHz
Standards :: Standards 802.11a 802.11ac 802.11ad 802.11e 802.11g 802.11n 802.20 Bluetooth MIMO UWB WiGig WiMAX ZigBee
Transportation and Lodging :: Transportation and Lodging Air Travel Aquatic Commuting Hotels Rails
Unclassified :: Unclassified
Vertical Markets :: Vertical Markets Academia Enterprise WLAN Switches Home Hot Spot Aggregators Hot Spot Advertising Road Warrior Roaming Libraries Location Medical Public Safety Residential Rural SOHO Small-Medium Sized Business Universities Utilities wISP
Voice :: Voice


November 2010 | October 2010 | September 2010 | August 2010 | July 2010 | June 2010 | May 2010 | April 2010 | March 2010 | February 2010 | January 2010 | December 2009 | November 2009 | October 2009 | September 2009 | August 2009 | July 2009 | June 2009 | May 2009 | April 2009 | March 2009 | February 2009 | January 2009 | December 2008 | November 2008 | October 2008 | September 2008 | August 2008 | July 2008 | June 2008 | May 2008 | April 2008 | March 2008 | February 2008 | January 2008 | December 2007 | November 2007 | October 2007 | September 2007 | August 2007 | July 2007 | June 2007 | May 2007 | April 2007 | March 2007 | February 2007 | January 2007 | December 2006 | November 2006 | October 2006 | September 2006 | August 2006 | July 2006 | June 2006 | May 2006 | April 2006 | March 2006 | February 2006 | January 2006 | December 2005 | November 2005 | October 2005 | September 2005 | August 2005 | July 2005 | June 2005 | May 2005 | April 2005 | March 2005 | February 2005 | January 2005 | December 2004 | November 2004 | October 2004 | September 2004 | August 2004 | July 2004 | June 2004 | May 2004 | April 2004 | March 2004 | February 2004 | January 2004 | December 2003 | November 2003 | October 2003 | September 2003 | August 2003 | July 2003 | June 2003 | May 2003 | April 2003 | March 2003 | February 2003 | January 2003 | December 2002 | November 2002 | October 2002 | September 2002 | August 2002 | July 2002 | June 2002 | May 2002 | April 2002 | March 2002 | February 2002 | January 2002 | December 2001 | November 2001 | October 2001 | September 2001 | August 2001 | July 2001 | June 2001 | May 2001 | April 2001 |

Recent Entries

In-Flight Wi-Fi and In-Flight Bombs
Can WPA Protect against Firesheep on Same Network?
Southwest Sets In-Flight Wi-Fi at $5
Eye-Fi Adds a View for Web Access
Firesheep Makes Sidejacking Easy
Wi-Fi Direct Certification Starts
Decaf on the Starbucks Digital Network
Google Did Snag Passwords
WiMax and LTE Not Technically 4G by ITU Standards
AT&T Wi-Fi Connections Keep High Growth with Free Service

Site Philosophy

This site operates as an independent editorial operation. Advertising, sponsorships, and other non-editorial materials represent the opinions and messages of their respective origins, and not of the site operator. Part of the FM Tech advertising network.


Entire site and all contents except otherwise noted © Copyright 2001-2010 by Glenn Fleishman. Some images ©2006 Jupiterimages Corporation. All rights reserved. Please contact us for reprint rights. Linking is, of course, free and encouraged.

Powered by
Movable Type

« Top Wi-Fi Stories of 2005: The Irony, The Agony, The Security | Main | Massport Faces More Opposition »

January 2, 2006


I rarely predict, but this year it's easy: With so much in process, it seems straightforward to see what this year in Wi-Fi looks like. You're welcome to say "Ha ha!" on Jan. 1, 2007, where I'm wrong.

802.11n won't be ratified this year. The standards battle will get resolved and a proposal will win the 75 percent supermajority required for moving forward on a draft. Ratification won't happen until 2007. Speed will continue to be pushed, however, and what's sometimes referred to as a new "100 Mbps" standard will start being called a "200 Mbps" standard.

802.11n-like devices will ship year. By third quarter, there will be several chipsets in shipping equipment that incorporate draft-compatible versions of 802.11n in slower flavors. Manufacturers will issue a variety of promises and hedges about future compatibility with the ratified 802.11n spec.

One-button or simple security will appear for home Wi-Fi.
Several disparate efforts being brought together into one potential standard at The Wi-Fi Alliance will result in firmware and software updates for tens of millions of existing Wi-Fi devices to allow simple WPA Personal setup.

Techniques to break WPA TKIP keys more efficiently will appear. But the TKIP key will continue to remain worthwhile when used with good passphrases. AES will remain unassailable in 2006.

Municipal Wi-Fi will continue to gain momentum. Hundreds of new RFPs will appear next year and hundreds of millions of dollars will be spent. Battles among incumbents, competitive operators, cities, and non-profits will be waged. But networks will be built. And we'll finally see whether muni-scale networks can deliver on promises, probably within the first quarter of 2006.

Google will not build a national Wi-Fi network. Instead, they will roll out services for municipal-scale Wi-Fi network operators.

San Francisco will probably not have a network. I place the odds on this at about 50 percent that San Francisco's winning network bidder will not begin work in 2006 due to lawsuits or public process.

Transportation Wi-Fi will slowly increase. I don't see any massive rollouts for rail, plane, bus, or ferry Wi-Fi for commuters and business travelers in 2006. Rather, the same steady increase in options will continue especially with cellular 3G becoming more ubiquitous for travelers who need access everywhere--assuming that metal tubes that encase users in buses, ferries, trains, and planes don't prove to be effective barriers.

Wi-Fi hotspots will cross 200,000 worldwide. They're already at roughly 100,000 worldwide today. The trend isn't lessening at either the informal level (adding a Wi-Fi gateway in a coffeeshop) or the top-end (installing a multi-million dollar airport system).

Free and fee hotspots will continue to co-exist, but hotels will increasingly drop fees. This is just a continuation of a trend. We won't see chains of thousands of hotspots drop their fees, but higher-end hotels will move towards the amenity model and stop charging. They may also stop charging for local and long-distance calls.

All consumer electronic categories will have many Wi-Fi-equipped models. It may take until Christmas 2006, but every single category of consumer product will have not just a proof of concept, but many items with Wi-Fi built in. Digital cameras with Wi-Fi might finally reach the consumer level with reasonable features, such as Secure FTP (SFTP) support. The remaining wild card is whether devices will be able to stream wirelessly among any equipment or whether the MPAA will fight back those attempts and require encrypted streams among licensed devices.

Fixed WiMax won't take off, but it will grow. While a lot of fixed WiMax equipment will ship and the certification process will continue to advance, there will be no new large WiMax networks built in the U.S., nor any substantial urban or suburban residential service launched. Rather, the trend of point-to-multipoint fixed broadband wireless will continue to roll on as a business-grade T-1 and multiple T-1 replacement.

Mobile WiMax will still be a non-starter. For all the hype surrounding it, the standard was just finished in the IEEE, certification is far off, and silicon is way early. 2007 probably won't see much happening beyond trials and possibly some deployments outside the U.S., either.

Multiple 3G cell data networks will be in every major U.S. city. We're not far off already, but Cingular, Sprint, and Verizon will have hit all major metro markets with competitive, overlapping service, which should push prices down.

3G operators will offer better Wi-Fi plans and VoIP. Despite Verizon's anti-Wi-Fi advertisements that misstate EVDO's strengths and Wi-Fi's weakness, Verizon will join the Wi-Fi fray. Cingular, Sprint, and Verizon will all offer phones that work over Wi-Fi or cell networks, although seamless handoff is still probably not in the cards.


Loved it: I agree with most of your predictions but would make the following
Comments and or additions:
1. 802.11n a General response:
MIMO (which really is foundation for 802.11n)is already fully deployed using 3rd generation Airgo based products. New Netgear and Linksys MIMO based ROuters are able to deliver over 100Mbps. Interesting that Linksys(Cisco),member of Intel breakaway group,is still using Airgo chips in their SRX200 and SRX400 series devices. Netgear is promoting 240 Mbps throughput.

2. Fee and Free Hotspots and Hospitality markets:
If you consider the explosion of Muni Mesh Networks we will see a major change in how Hotel/Motel/Resorts deploy and charge for Internet Access. These Mesh Networks will be deployed in streets near these properties and will provide an alternative/competitive service.
Muni will have to address these tax payers if they offer free Internet on the Mesh.

3. WiMAX-Fixed and Mobile:
Fixed (PTMP) WiMAX systems will be used increasingly by Wireless Mesh network providers to deliver the big bandwidth links to the various Gateway Nodes as these Mesh Nets begin addressing congestion issues.
Mobile WiMAX will have a difficult time competing with new and existing WiFi based products and emerging 3/4G Cellnets and Qualcomm/Flarion. These Mobile systems (Broadcast based)will falter when their systems (using 2Ghz and above spectrum) are exposed to the Canopy in these Metro markets. In addition the vendors will have major issues with meeting their own interoperability standards, especially when they begin releasing Pre-802.16e products and attain a level of success.

One of my predictions:
Controversy will rear its ugly head as we begin to see/experience some of the limitations of the original Mesh Network deployed. The result will be that Major Cities will begin to require their designated Providers to focus more on multiple (3-4) Radio Mesh Node products that can handle congestion, improved reach with multiple backhaul radios and specialty antennas and address the need for a separate Public Safety network (4.9Ghz and or 7-800Mhz)

Jacomo for 2006

One comment. There is already a superior MESH product available on the market today which provides support for standard 2.4GHz band as well as the public saftey 4.9GHz domain, its called MotoMesh and its a product of Motorola's convergence with Mesh Networks.


[Editor's note: In a recent conversation with the MotoMesh folks, I was told that metropolitan-scale residential broadband access over mesh was essentially impossible. The MotoMesh product is focused on mobility and ubiquity -- not the same market as metropolitan-scale final-mile broadband. My prediction is too ambiguous on that score.--gf]