Monday, April 12, 2010

WiMAX Forum Launches New Open Retail Initiative

The WiMAX Forum kicked off an Open Retail Initiative aimed at increasing the global availability of WiMAX devices, while reducing the technical and capital overhead by WiMAX network operators to test products on their network.

The new certification program seeks to drive the proliferation of WiMAX consumer devices, sold direct or through retail channels that can be activated with ease by the consumer over the air (OTA) on the network of any participating operator. To fully support this new program, the WiMAX Forum will have its designated certification laboratories ready to test and certify mobile Open Retail devices for interoperability in May 2010.

As part of the new certification program, The WiMAX Forum announced a significant number of new capability requirements and tests -- including radiated performance testing (RPT) thresholds and operator interoperability testing (IOT). The program could reduce a mobile operator's interoperability testing overhead. In addition, these tests will ensure equipment interoperability at the level operators require. In order to address and scale to market demands, the WiMAX Forum has the following independent lab resources available to certify equipment and devices in an end-to-end IOT environment: AT4 Wireless (U.S. and Spain labs), Bureau Veritas ADT (Taiwan), Telecom Technology Center (Taiwan), China Academy of Telecommunication Research (China), and the Telecommunications Technology Association (Korea). Later this fall, the WiMAX Forum will add another test facility in Malaysia.

"The introduction of the Open Retail Initiative is a pivotal step for the WiMAX ecosystem to remain on the current accelerated path for mass adoption through a certification and IOT program that provides significant benefits to operators and vendors," said Ron Resnick, president and chairman of the WiMAX Forum.

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