Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access, or WiMAX, is a set of broadband wireless communication standards that are based on IEEE 802.16 standards.

In network terminology, the “last mile” is the last leg of the connection that connects the user to the service provider network. Examples of last mile technologies include DSL, T1, and LTE. WiMAX is a technology designed to provide last mile access over broadband wireless. It can be used to deliver digital services including the Internet, voice and video.

Read on to find out all that you need to know about WiMAX and its relevance to your business requirements.

WiMAX Technology

WiMAX is a standard for broadband wireless communication. It is similar to Wi-Fi in that it allows for broadband wireless connectivity between devices manufactured by different vendors. However, while Wi-Fi is intended for indoor use over limited distances, WiMAX is intended to connect residential and business users throughout a metropolitan or rural area.

Another difference between WiMAX and Wi-Fi is that WiMAX uses licensed frequency bands. Your home or office Wi-Fi can get affected if a neighbor or someone else close by switches to the same channel that you are using. However, this doesn’t happen in WiMAX as the frequencies used by the system are regulated by the FCC.

WiMAX is designed to offer fixed as well as mobile access.

How Does WiMAX Work?

A WiMAX network is similar to a cellular network, in that a number of WiMAX base stations are deployed to provide wireless coverage for a designated area. Each WiMAX base station is connected to the service provider core network from where services such as the Internet, voice and video are delivered.

Users of WiMAX use fixed or mobile Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) to connect to the base station with the strongest signal. Typically, this would be the nearest base station.

Fixed WiMAX

Fixed WiMAX

As the name suggests, Fixed WiMAX provides connectivity for subscribers that are fixed i.e. are not mobile. Fixed WiMAX systems comply with the IEEE 802.16d standard.

A typical fixed WiMAX deployment would consist of an outdoor or indoor CPE that connects to a WiMAX base station. The CPE can have integrated Wi-Fi to allows users to access the services delivered over WiMAX. The CPE can also be connected to the home or office wired LAN.

Typical data rates for indoor WiMAX CPEs range from 1 to 5 Mbps. Typical data rates for outdoor CPEs can go up to 30 Mbps. It should be noted that just like LTE, you will get higher data rates if the WiMAX signal is strong: the closer you are to the base station, the higher will be the data rate.

Mobile WiMAX

Mobile WiMAX provides connectivity for mobile users with vehicular speeds of up to 120 kmh. Mobile WiMAX systems comply with the IEEE 802.16e standard.

Business Applications and Benefits of WiMAX

WiMAX can be used by Internet service providers, mobile operators, and wireline operators for offering high-speed mobile broadband data services to clients. It can also be used for:

  • Offering data, IPTV, and VoIP services
  • Creating portable mobile broadband hotspots.
  • As a wireless alternative to DSL, cable, and other modes of wired last-mile broadband Internet access.
  • Metering and smart grids.

The benefits of WiMAX technology include:

  • Long-distance coverage
  • High data rates
  • Ease of installation
  • Reliability
  • Scalability
  • Encryption for wireless security.

WiMAX is a great wireless technology that was developed to deliver broadband wireless access. Even though the advent of LTE led to a decline in WiMAX use worldwide, WiMAX is a still very reliable technology that delivers triple play services especially in regions that lack wired infrastructure.

If you are interested in exploring WiMAX for your business requirements, then feel free to reach out to us at for a free consultation. You can also fill the web form below with your details and our experts can help you assess your business communication requirements.

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