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Wimax Technology Description

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The term WiMAX stands for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. The technology makes the delivery of wireless broadband service possible for mobile and fixed users. The technology became a reality when Korea Telecom deployed, WIBRO, a 2.3GHz version of Mobile WiMAX, to Seoul to provide high video and data performance. By the end of 2012, WiMAX Forum predicts that at least 130 million people across the globe will be using this technology. There are at least 250 trials and deployments of the technology in the world.

WiMAX Forum, which currently boosts 1000 plus member companies who includes equipment vendors, service providers, content providers and chip vendors, is a non-profit organization. The main objective of the organization is to ensure the interoperability of IEEE 802.16 products through certification. IEEE 802.16 standards are the base of WiMAX technology. Mobile WiMAX is based on IEEE 802.16e that the IEEE approved in December 2005. The standard specifies the Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access air interface in addition to providing support for its mobility.

The features implemented in WiMAX devices and systems are found in mobile WiMAX System Profile Release 1.0 developed in 2006. WiMAX Forum is currently maintaining this profile. The technology has a flexible bandwidth allocation and built-in types of QoS (Quality of Service) support in the network. This allows for video calls, Voice over IP (VoIP), multimedia chats, high-speed internet access and mobile entertainment. The technology also has the capability to deliver multimedia messages to electronic gadgets.

WiMAX Forum has been creating a certification program for the technology since Release 1.0 Mobile System Profile was completed. The certification is an integral part of proliferation of any modern and new technology in the world. WiMAX Forum Certified Seal of Approval was first issued to four mobile stations and four base stations in April 2008 (WiMAX Forum, 2008d). Two months later the WiMAX Forum awarded six mobile stations and four base stations in time for commercial deployment across the globe (WiMAX Forum, 2008e). To understand the start of WiMAX, it is vital to understand the WiMAX Forum.

WiMAX Forum

As stated above, this is a non-profit making organization. Component and equipment suppliers formed the organization in april 2001 with an aim of certifying and promoting the interoperability and compatibility of equipment for Broadband Wireless Access. Some of the members are Alcatel, Airspan, Proxim, OFDM Forum, Siemens, Intel and Fujitsu. The forum brings together companies in the computer and wireless industry that have endorsed and marketed the WiMAX standard. A key belief of the Forum is that a key factor in the successful deployment factor is the adoption of standard industry regulations.

The creation of a single interoperable standard calls for WiMAX to focus on 256 FFT OFDM common between HIPERMAN and 802.16a. The initial tests of the operability of the technology focused on equipment operating in the bandwidth ranges of 2.5-3.5 GHz. With time, the tests gave expanded to bigger bandwidth ranges. The strategy of the WiMAX Forum include:

a. The selection of a workable subset of system variations and system profiles in the 802.16 standard

b. Development of a sound testing and certification protocol for validation of equipment that conform to WiMAX certification requirements

c. A continued support of 802.16 standard's corrections and updates.

With certification, vendors no longer verify built systems from scratch. The cost of equipment also goes down due to manufacturing efficiencies.

WiMAX Deployment

The aim of WiMAX standard is to meet the needs of future generation networks. As such, the technology is distinguished by a burst and dynamic algorithm modulation. This algorithm is adaptive to the environment that RF signals pass through. The modulation is such that the bits per OFDM symbol are higher to improve efficiency. This means that if the signal has a higher carrier to noise ratio and high strength, its digital signal processing is fast and easy. When the system is operating in poor RF environments, the system steps down automatically to a more robust mode having few bits per



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