The future success of WiMAX will depend on successful roaming, but its implementation is both complex and challenging to achieve.
This was the point hammered home by Tue From Hermansen, MACH’s director of Next Generation Solutions, when speaking at the WiMAX Forum Global Congress in Amsterdam last week (16th June 2010).
There are over 120 mobile WiMAX operators in 60 countries with more than 2.5 million mobile WiMAX subscribers worldwide. This represents a tremendous WiMAX roaming opportunity, whereby operators can increase revenue through both outbound and inbound roaming, while effectively reducing churn.
In a presentation focused on WiMAX roaming and entitled ‘The WiMAX Roaming Business Case,’ Tue talked about the advantages of adopting a hubbing model for implementing WiMAX roaming versus the establishment of a myriad of bilateral roaming agreements amongst global operators of all kinds. Establishing roaming through multilateral hubbing is the fastest and most efficient way to achieve global WiMAX roaming. There are also many differences between a connection HUB + bilateral RP approach and a connection HUB + multilateral approach.
Meanwhile, Ramon Castillo, MACH’s technical product manager, chaired the subsequent panel discussion entitled ‘What will WiMAX Roaming Look Like? Collaborating to Realise the Global Ambition of the WiMAX Proposition.’
MACH’s WiMAX and Interoperability model is easy to manage and its cost effective connection makes it a smarter choice. The flexibility and design robustness of MACH WiMAX roaming services renders agility to the business models. Castillo’s panel discussed the readiness of WiMAX roaming and the business models, both post paid and prepaid, that will support it.
In conclusion, there is tremendous roaming opportunity out there considering the WiMAX market size. Market experts predict roaming revenue will reach EUR 140 million by 2014. The big takeaway from the WiMAX Forum Global Congress 2010 is that without global roaming coverage, mobile WiMAX success will be minimal.