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MuniFi, VoIP & Great (UnMet) Expecations

By Larry Hendrick | August 14, 2007

More disappointment for the Muni Wifi proponents today, as Om Malik exposes more of the truth about these deployments. The article covers many of the same aspects I have discussed before, but adds a quote by Andy Abramson about the Tropos mesh networks.

GigaOM MuniFi, VoIP & Great (UnMet) Expecations «
MuniFi, to some extent, has been a victim of putting expectations ahead of reality. MuniFi used to be seen as the panacea of all our broadband problems, giving us the ability to roam free and make VoIP calls while watching the great Meteor shower. Reality turned out to be a bit different.

Andy Abramson laments about the poor performance of Philadelphia and Anaheim networks, especially their ability to handle VoIP traffic.

“I have to say that part of the blame is the deployment of a mesh network architecture from Tropos…Tropos officials admitted to me earlier this week that mesh as it currently sits is not really ready for VoIP until the voice 802.11 R standard comes along.”

The biggest problem comes from mesh networks. They are the only way to deploy the current technology to cover large square miles of territory, because of distance limitations. However, the mesh network doesn’t deliver on its promises. The problems are numerous, but not supporting VoIP is huge.

Does this kill large-scale wireless deployment? No, but the right technology will better serve the needs, and 802.11x isn’t the right technology.

Topics: Business, WiFi |