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Report: Wireless Metro Area Networks Set to Boom

Spurred by the growing popularity of wireless hotspots, wireless metropolitan area networks (WMANs) are set to grow rapidly, according to a report released Wednesday by Datacomm Research Company.

WMANs provide an easier way for vendors to connect their hotspots to the Internet than high-speed wired access, the report notes. Such wireless backhaul capabilities cost less and are easier to deploy.

"The growing need for high-speed communications between fixed locations combined with rapidly evolving technology will breathe new life into the wireless MAN industry," Ira Brodsky, president of Datacomm Research said in a statement. Brodsky is the author of the report.

Besides providing backhaul capabilities for hotspots, the second most common application for WMANs will be so-called metro Ethernets that interconnect an enterprise's LANs that are located in various locations, the report said.

The report also noted that the technology will high-speed provide access to users in rural areas that aren't served by landline high-speed access. However, the report predicted that such wireless access won't replace wired broadband such as cable modems and DSL when those services are available.

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