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Telcos To Roll Out WiMAX By 2006-2007: Report

Telecom carriers and service providers expect to begin rolling out commercial WiMax services by 2007, according to a new report from Heavy Reading.

Surveying representatives of 175 network operators, the firm found widespread interest in the wireless networking technology, with more than 80% expecting commercial WiMax services to become available within the next two years. Almost 40% of respondents, however, anticipate commercial WiMAX rollouts to begin this year. Though a 60% of all telecom companies expect WiMAX to have a profound long-term impact on their service offering and networks Bell companies, long distance operators and conventional wireless network operators are particularly enthusiastic.

According to the report, fewer than 2% of respondents see WiMAX as "more hype than hope," noting that "These results clearly show that WiMAX developers have succeeded in making a strong case for their technology, and that service providers are expecting WiMax to have a place in future network designs."

Most carriers are already testing the technology, expecting it to be mature enough for commercial deployment in the next 12 to 18 months. At that time, the report says, almost all of carriers currently evaluating WiMAX will seriously consider service introductions.