Author Archives: Sherry Jones

Ember Raises $12M

ZigBee, a wireless technology standard that relies on low-power, low data-rate chips to automate electronic devices, is helping Boston-based Ember raise enough revenue to meet the demand for the chips. Homes and businesses use the chips for everyday appliances, inventory management, and monitoring systems; roughly 10 billion microcontrollers are installed in everyday items each year.Continue Reading

Aruba Plans For Success

Wireless LAN is fine for data, and most companies using the technology have their systems at about 10 percent wireless with the rest still on Ethernet. But to go all the way requires voice capabilities, and to achieve phone mobility you need a wireless system. According to Dominic Orr, chief executive of Aruba, the differenceContinue Reading

Citywide Wi-Fi Struggles For Acceptance

With city-wide WiFi networks popping up all over the US, it’s no surprise that some cities are experiencing growing pains. One city was abandoned by its operator, technical problems plague another, and governmental red tape is slowing down wireless access in several others. Fans of the delays say waiting gives cities a chance for updatedContinue Reading

S.J. To Expand WiFi Hotspots Downtown

Mountain View-based MetroFi won a contract bid with San Jose to expand the city’s hotspots along thoroughfares and in downtown parks. The winning proposal provides free Internet access to residents at zero cost to the city and boasts download speeds of about 1 megabit per second. MetroFi will generate revenue by selling network advertising andContinue Reading

The In-Flight Wireless Wrangle

Noise-reducing headphone sales will surely skyrocket if AirCell and JetBlue Airways have their way. Their recently won chunk of air-to-ground communications radio airwaves is earmarked for in-flight Wi-Fi Internet access with possible cell phone usage not far behind. The deal isn’t final, however, and obstacles, such as the FCC, RTCA, FAA, and Verizon (current ownerContinue Reading

Wi-Fi: Coming Soon On Board U.S. Airplanes

AirCell’s newly-acquired radio spectrum license might change the world of in-flight Internet access for passengers aboard US commercial airplanes. The new spectrum would allow “affordable” broadband service without conflicting with the federal ban on in-flight cell phone use. The calls, which would travel over a different frequency, wouldn’t pose a threat to aircraft navigational systems.Continue Reading

Google Forging Ahead With Wi-Fi Efforts

Google will provide free wireless Internet access service to its hometown of Mountain View, Calif. in a phased rollout that begins this summer. Volunteers providing feedback for the project can sign up for Wi-Fi this summer, with public service coming available later this year. Meanwhile, Google is working with Earthlink to blanket San Francisco withContinue Reading

Atheros And Broadcom Combine Over 802.11n

Speed may be the goal, but interoperability is the number one concern among 802.11n vendors and user-hopefuls. The 802.11n standard is hoped to achieve markedly faster transmission speeds with higher quality at longer distances and with less interference. Unfortunately, current 802.11n draft-compliant products have tested at less than desired levels, even coming short of resultsContinue Reading

Chicago Wireless Plan Advances

Chicago plans to spend $18.5 million to blanket the city in Wi-Fi so its citizens can easily access and afford the Internet. Approximately 7,500 antennas will be needed to create the wireless network, with access points mounted on top of city-owned streetlights and lamp poles as well as privately-owned sites. The city is looking forContinue Reading

IT – Beware Of Consumer Wi-Fi Phones

Nokia’s 6136 and Samsung’s T709 are a new kind of cell phone; they’re Wi-Fi enabled and ready to provide uninterrupted connections no matter where you are. Wi-Fi enabled phones are intended to travel seamlessly from Wi-Fi to cellular without a loss in data. But users be warned: if dropped calls will wreak havoc on yourContinue Reading

BWI Trying To Make Waits Better With Free Wi-Fi Access

Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI) is expanding wireless Internet access throughout the airport to make traveling more convenient for their flying customers. BWI joins airports in Canada and across the US in offering Wi-Fi as a free customer service rather than the paid concession it once was. Holdouts in the wireless conversion are majorContinue Reading

Manhattan’s Almost Ubiquitous Wi-Fi

Manhattan is being blanketed in overlapping hotzones by Telkonet, a Maryland-based ISP, in conjunction with Microwave Satellite Technologies (MST) and its NuVisions trademark. Together they provide Wi-Fi along with voice, video and data services by connecting Gigabit Ethernet to building powerlines then adding high-power access points. By servicing off private property, Telkonet doesn’t require accessContinue Reading

Intel Plans Wireless Blood Pressure Monitors

Health and medical-related uses for Bluetooth and wireless communications technology have manufacturers including IBM, Motorola, Nonin Medical, Phillips Electronics, and Welch Allyn joining forces to create and ratify a new Bluetooth Medical Device Profile. Using the new industry standard, blood pressure monitors, exercise equipment, and other health and medical devices will connect wirelessly to BluetoothContinue Reading

Mobile WiMax Could Restrict Fixed Systems

Portable wireless technology may steal some of the thunder from fixed WiMax systems, according to a report by Juniper Research. Analysts predict that, while fixed WiMax is expected to grow in the next 2-3 years, mobile WiMax offers a superior standard, a fixed wireless option in addition to mobility, and it’s all on track forContinue Reading

WiMax Vendors Warned Of Qualcomm Licensing Costs

According to analysts from ABI Research’s Mobile Broadband Research Service, WiMax vendors should start factoring royalties payable to Qualcomm into their pricing plans. Qualcomm, patent-holder for Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) and Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing (OFDM) technology, already has payment agreements in place with Soma Networks, and is expected to “vigorously” enforce royalty payments withContinue Reading