Tropos Metro Compatible Extensions (TMCE) standardizes hardware, firmware for metro-scale client devices: The idea extends on Tropos' previous architecture that allows monitoring and control from end-user customer premises equipment (CPE) up to the network backbone from a centralized tool. TMCE goes further by providing a toolkit for client devices and software to conform to a set of specifications design to produce better performance within a metro environment. This includes hardware and RF specifications.
Tropos says the PePLink Surf 200BG is the first device that meets its spec to hit the market. It's a high-power (200 mW) CPE that I've already heard is being used in Tropos markets around the country. (There's a 400 mW version that doesn't appear to be certified by Tropos yet.) St. Cloud, Florida, sells this to residents on the fringes of reception for $170; I've heard the same price from other regions.
I've gone on the record before noting that higher-gain antennas and higher-power transceivers make the local RF environment worse, and that the transition to MIMO-based technology--a small increase in radio power but a smarter use of beamforming and multipath reflection--will have a much greater positive impact.
Tropos estimates a $1b market by 2009 for add-on metro-scale devices. This jibes with the tens of millions of users that will have Wi-Fi pass by them in urban, suburban, exurban, and rural areas by then. The only thing that could take the wind out of that $1b market? If it's subsumed within existing Wi-Fi or other wireless adapters--by building TMCE-like compliance in 802.11n-based devices in laptops and desktops, the cost drops quite a bit over selling standalone devices.
The TMCE tie into the management, monitoring, and provisioning features in the Tropos centralized system.