More than just a fond dream of the wireless carriers, 4G wireless data is becoming a reality. Sprint has been building their network for the last year or so based on a technology called “WiMAX”, which is an extension of the WiFi standard. They have reached 55 cities so far. Unfortunately, WiMAX has fallen somewhat out of favor and Verizon is building their network on a technology they call “LTE” for Long-Term Evolution. No word on whether AT&T has entered the standards fray.
One thing is clear, however, and that is that 4Q wireless technology is coming soon and will be a viable replacement for wired network access. The speeds available will exceed that of current T1 technology and come with the added benefit of untethered access. This could be a boon to industries like Retail, who could have terminals in the hands of staff to help clients anywhere in the store, or Insurance, who could set up remote offices quickly in storm-ravaged areas. The possibilities are only just becoming apparent.
The new wireless access will also be a boon to equipment providers, who will be stretching their product lines to fill the needs of Enterprise clients as they explore the applications.