Public WLANs Essential for 3G: Study

By allNetDevices Staff

July 09, 2001

Public wireless local area networks (WLANs) in places such as airports and hotels are essential to the success of third-generation wireless services, according to a new study by Datacomm Research Company that was released Monday.

Public wireless local area networks (WLANs) in places such as airports and hotels are essential to the success of third-generation wireless services, according to a new study by Datacomm Research Company that was released Monday.

"3G wireless network operators need public wireless LANs to serve the most demanding users in the most demanding locations," said Ira Brodsky, president of Datacomm Research.

The study notes that public WLANs are starting to gain popularity but that 3G operators and companies that operate public WLANs must start working together to ensure the success of both. That will enable the public WLANs to have enough coverage to be truly useful.

Wireless operators need the WLANs to offload heavy indoor traffic. Like wireless operators, WLAN operators need subscription control, roaming agreements and centralized network management, the study notes.

The study notes that there are "significant" e-commerce opportunities for WLAN operators, most notably location-dependant, targeted promotions. It also said that the public WLANs could serve as a distribution point for multimedia.

The public LANs could use either Bluetooth or 802.11 technology, also known as Wi-Fi. However, the report notes that Wi-Fi is the more mature technology and ultimately 802.11a will offer speeds as high as 54Mbps.



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