Last updated: February 21, 2008 - 1:18am
METRO WI-FI NETWORK COVERAGE TO TOP 126,000 SQUARE MILES BY 2010
[SOURCE: ABI Research press release]
In 2005, according to a report published by ABI Research, municipal Wi-Fi networks covered only about 1,500 square miles worldwide. Yet by 2010, that figure is expected to increase to 126,000 square miles, an area slightly larger than Poland, or the U.S. state of New Mexico. The bulk of these deployments will take place in North America and the Asia-Pacific region. To serve those networks, more than one million wireless mesh routers will be shipped in 2010. The manufacturing revenues from those shipments will exceed $1.2 billion. According to the report, four significant trends are energizing this emerging market: 1) Many local governments clearly wish to deploy municipal broadband networks, for public safety as well as increased government efficiency; 2) Alternative ISPs see mesh networking as enabling their own broadband service facilities to compete with incumbent service providers; 3) Wireless mesh networking technology is seen as an efficient and cost-effective means of providing broadband access to underserved areas. This is particularly noticeable as the municipal Wi-Fi trend moves from great metropolises into smaller cities and towns; and 4) Potentially, wireless mesh networking technology can serve as a competitive tool for cable operators.
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