Another very big win for Intel’s WiMAX ambitions: The International Telecommunications Union, an influential world body that sets guidelines on wireless technologies, has officially certified the technology behind WiMAX as a sixth new 3G standard. OFDM-A, the technology behind WiMAX, already had been in the running for 4G leadership, but the new ITU approval means countries and wireless carriers that have not fully utilized 3G spectrum now can allocate that to WiMAX. It wedges a big foot in the door if they do, since WiMAX currently delivers the faster mobile Web access than other technologies already being marketed. Some 160 countries, including Japan, U.S., and Brazil follow the ITU’s decisions for spectrum policy. All the major Japanese wireless carriers currently are bidding to set up WiMAX networks there, and Intel is jointly bidding to build a network with telecommunications service provider KDDI.
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