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  Ed Agis
  Ed Agis

WiMAX News

InterComms talks to Ed Agis, Senior Chair of the WiMAX Forum

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Mr. Ed Agis is a Market Development Manager for the Mobility Wireless Standards and Technology Division of Intel. He is the Senior Chair of the WiMAX Forum Certification Working Group and a member of the WiMAX Technical and Marketing Working Groups with the WiMAX Forum. He is actively involved in the IEEE 802.16 standards body and responsible for the development of the certification testing infrastructure of the WiMAX Forum. Mr. Agis is also the WiMAX Forum Liaison to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).

Prior to joining the Wireless Standards and Technology Group, Ed was assigned to the Wireless Product Division (WPD) responsible for marketing programs strategy and development for the Intel wireless networking planning strategy.

Mr. Agis joined Intel in January of 2001. Prior to his current position, Mr. Agis was the Director of Marketing and Business Unit Manager for Access Products at Xircom leading the launch of numerous mobile access products. Before joining Intel, Mr. Agis also worked for Texas Instruments as the WW Product Marketing Manager for Advance Systems Solutions and PCI Bus Products. During his tenure at Texas Instruments, Mr. Agis led the launch and market development of TIs PC Card Controller, PCI Bridge Chips and Low Voltage Logic Chips.

Mr. Agis holds a Bachelors of Science Degree from the Air Force Academy, graduating Magna cum Laude in 1976 as well as a Masters of Business Administration in Management and another in Operations/Product Marketing from USC/Amber University.

Q: With the validation testing of 2.3 GHz Mobile WiMAX, what were the main benefits in the new channels?
A: The validation testing of 2.3 GHz Mobile WiMAX will allow WiMAX vendors to introduce products that are multiband. Whether a product operates in 2.3 GHz, 2.5 GHz or 3.5 GHz frequency bands, a multiband device will be compatible throughout each. This is exciting as one WiMAX-enabled device will work in the United States, Japan, Europe and even the Far East in Indonesia, seamlessly operating on different frequency bands and enabling true global roaming for WiMAX devices.

Q: Where do you see 2.3 GHz in terms of helping service providers in developing new revenue streams?
A: A service provider who has 2.3 GHz in one region and a different spectrum in another region will now be able to provide their existing customers roaming capabilities. Another great source of new revenue will be the opportunity to service a completely new group of customers who did not have WiMAX before. For example, a WiMAX service provider of 2.5 GHz in Japan but also a provider of 2.3 GHz spectrum in another geography will now be able to offer customers the opportunity to roam between both regions on the same service. This also means that the service provider will have a new customer base in 2.3 GHz to provide the benefits of WiMAX.

Q: With this being a critical factor in developing WiMAX in developing regions do you see this being crucial in providing new services in the region and in someway helping bridge the divide?
A: Absolutely. This is crucial in terms of providing broadband access to rural areas and emerging countries. Countries like India or Malaysia are already being armed with a much more cost-effective broadband access via WiMAX.

WiMAX offers cheap broadband access for the masses and the affordable broadband technology is creating new ways of delivering basic social services to underserved communities. WiMAX has the capability to sufficiently provide the bandwidth needed to enable multimedia requirements that can be used in e-business, e-health and e-education, to name a few.

Q: When do you invisage the thirteen member companies having product to deploy and what is the highlight of their products?
A: I envision vendors coming to the WiMAX Forum Certification labs in the first quarter of 2010. I can’t speak to highlights of vendors’ products as this is all proprietary information for each of our member companies but I expect innovative and exciting products soon.

Q: Within the last edition of InterComms the ITU Secretary General said of WiMAX “its spectrum allocation in the lower frequency bands makes it resilient and suitable for carrying data over long distances need to provide effective access to rural and remote under-populated areas” are there what you would say landmark deployments that could be used as role models for rural deployment?
A: An example would be the spectrum offering in Indonesia, where there are plans to use WiMAX for broadband access to the Internet. In India, there are trial deployments in major cites and in rural areas. This means that a small village with only one laptop in the village will now be able to access to the broader community and even the world through the power of WiMAX. As devices continue to lower in cost, we will see more and more people, in both cities and rural areas, able to afford WiMAX-ready devices. In the U.S., greenfield providers are bringing last mile coverage to towns that have no access to broadband services.

Q: Where do you see the WiMAX Forum going from here in 2010?
A: We are focused on launching and implementing Open Retail. We are dedicated to making it easy for vendors and carriers to get their devices WiMAX Forum Certified™ as quickly as possible. We will start in 2.5 GHz and then plan to follow for other profiles. With Open Retail, consumers will be able to go to their nearest electronics store, buy their desired products, activate their service immediately in the store and then leave the store with full access the network. There would be a variety of payment options, including pay-as-you-go or all-you-can-use of WiMAX. Additionally, as global roaming takes off, users will be able to access other WiMAX networks in various countries.

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