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Broadband wireless access with WiMax/802.16: current performance benchmarks and future potential

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4 Author(s)

The IEEE 802.16 family of standards and its associated industry consortium, WiMax, promise to deliver high data rates over large areas to a large number of users in the near future. This exciting addition to current broadband options such as DSL, cable, and WiFi promises to rapidly provide broadband access to locations in the world's rural and developing areas where broadband is currently unavailable, as well as competing for urban market share. WiMax's competitiveness in the marketplace largely depends on the actual data rates and ranges that are achieved, but this has been difficult to judge due to the large number of possible options and competing marketing claims. This article first provides a tutorial overview of 802.16. Then, based on extensive recent studies, this article presents the realistic attainable throughput and performance of expected WiMax compatible systems based on the 802.16d standard approved in June 2004 (now named 802.16-2004). We also suggest future enhancements to the standard that could at least quadruple the achievable data rate, while also increasing the robustness and coverage, with only moderate complexity increases

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Communications Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:43 ,  Issue: 2 )