ADAPTIX gets supply deal for WiBro in South Korea
ADAPTIX, a provider of software-based broadband wireless technologies, this week announced it will provide channel cards for LG Electronics’ solutions for the South Korean deployment of WiBro, a Korean standard closely aligned with the pending 802.16(e) standard for mobile WiMAX.
Under the contract, Seattle-based ADAPTIX will supply channel cards for all of LG Electronics’ WiBro systems through 2006 and at least 75% of the channel cards for those systems in 2007, said ADAPTIX President and CEO Vern Fotheringham.
Analysts estimate that South Korean service providers will spend between $1.5 billion and $3 billion in capital expenditure to deploy WiBro in the 2.3 GHz band, beginning at the end of this year and early in 2006, Fotheringham said. Although revenue from South Korea “should be significant” for ADAPTIX, he declined to speculate on the value of the supply agreement, because the largest service providers–Korea Telecom and SKT–have not selected a vendors yet.
While short-term revenues certainly are desired, Fotheringham said he also is excited to be part of an effort at the forefront of the evolution of WiBro, which he said is “virtually identical” to mobile WiMAX. Successful deployments of WiBro in South Korea would be a big step in disproving statements from WiMAX critics that the long-range wireless broadband technology is more hype than substance, he said.
“The real benefit will be that real-world experience,” Fotheringham said. “It’s incumbent upon us to prove this works in the real world. It won’t be long until folks can touch it and see it work … We have a very firm resolve to just prove it, rather than to just talk about it.”
When the 802.16(e) standard is approved, one of ADAPTIX’s priorities is to provide solutions for first-responder vehicles, which can support the antenna necessary to receive the mobile WiMAX signal, Fotheringham said.
“One of our core addressable markets is public safety,” he said. “Our technology already is a fully mobile system, by design … Vehicular mobility is in our sweet spot.”