Proxim's latest point-to-multipoint hardware, the Tsunami MP.11 Model 5054-R is an interim stage on the road to full WiMax compliance: As Alvarion said back in June, so, too, Proxim is riding the WiMax name wave while providing a product platform they say is committed to future compliance when a standard for certification is finalized.
Proxim has taken the additional twist of defining WiMax applications as opposed to WiMax hardware. That is, they look to public safety and last-mile broadband wireless to the home as types of services that WiMax will enable.
What's not said in this article nor in Proxim's press releases is the cost and availability of upgrades to full WiMax compatibility. We had to push with Alvarion to get them to state clearly that each contract with each purchasers of an Alvarion system had specific language and commitments as to the WiMax upgrade. It's not a "free" part of buying pre-WiMax, but a negotiation issue. With Proxim, none of the materials mention costs or negotiation, and it's possible that they're much more bullish than Alvarion that the WiMax certification will only require software and firmware, but not hardware upgrades.
The Tsunami MP.11 was used in the Washington State Ferry system on-board/waiting area test that I wrote about for The New York Times back in July.
Hidden in press release is a bullet point mentioning that this equipment supports mobile receivers and 125 mile per hour handoffs! Now that's a technology you can build alongside railroads and highways. The system uses the 5 GHz band with 20 possible non-overlapping channels.
Proxim also announced several point-to-point bridges designed to extend range while maintaining low latency and high throughput.