Friday, July 17, 2009

LTE vs WiMax: Trying my best to understand emerging technologies....

There have been debates about technology for a long time. I recently came across Mike Demler's blog, The World is Analog. Demler attended the IEEE Mobile WiMax Symposium and shared what he learned on his post, "IEEE Mobile WiMax Symposium, Part I". In this post, Demler points out that the concept of the "internet of things" was a reoccuring theme during the symposium, and mentioned that there are many issues related to the future growth of the mobile internet.

Demler makes some good points. Capped data plans didn't work very well during the '90's. Demler gives the example of the old AOL dial-up plans, where people paid by the minute, often running up huge bills in AOL chat rooms. 3G networks lack the capacity to keep up with the growing demand for higher-bandwidth communication. At this time, there is no certain solution, as some predict that WiMax is the wave of the future, and others feel that LTE will be here to stay.

So what is LTE?

A quick look at a Wikipedia entry on the subject doesn't do a very good job of explaining things clearly. LTE stands for Long Term Evolution, but what is that, really? It you want to know more about the alphabet soup related to LTE, click on the following links
: FDD (Frequency Division Duplexing), TDD (Time Division Duplex), GSM, cdmaOne, W-CDMA (UMTS), 3GPP, PU2RC, MU-MIMO, HSDPA, Single Carrier Frequency Division Multiple Access (SC-FDMA), QPSK, 16QAM, 64QAM, MIMO

The Wikipedia entry about LTE comes with the following warning:

What is WiMax?

It stands for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. What's that?
You can find out more via Wikipedia.

Another warning:

Apparently, these technologies are confusing techies:

LTE vs WiMax: A Little 4G Sibling Rivalry
Stacey Higginbotham, GigaOM, (3/5/08)

Here are a few more articles that describe LTE and WiMax, and the "battle" between the two:

LTE vs WiMAX: The 4G Wireless War
Afzal Bajwa, Technologizer (5/20/09)

10 Things You Need to Know About LTE
Stacey Higginbotham, GigaOM, (2/26/09)

I recently learned that GE's Smart Kitchen uses WiMax. I think Duke Power's Smart Grid runs on Cisco's Linksys network system. See my post, "News about Smart Grids and Smart Kitchens". Also see "Pervasive Computing, DOOH, Intelligent Buildings, Programmable Nano-based Sensors, Privacy & Security, & Ethics.. hmmmm"


Mike Demler said...

Thanks for the link to my blog. I have a complete report explaining the emerging 4G technologies. A free excerpt is available for download at The Emerging 4G Wireless Landscape in the U.S., Operators, Chip Sets and Consumer Electronics.

-Mike Demler

Lynn V. Marentette said...

I'll download the free excerpt, since I don't have the $$ to purchase the entire article.