Taiwan has become the lastest market to voice concerns over the use of network equipment from Chinese vendor Huawei, with the regulator—the National Communications Commission—ruling that core network kit may not be cleared for use by Taiwanese operators because of national security worries. Huawei has met with similar objections recently in India and the US.
Taiwan’s broadband infrastructure needs improving and is limiting the country’s business opportunities, according to the chief technology and strategy officer of networking giant Cisco.
The GSM Association (GSMA) has suggested to the government of Taiwan that the country should move away from WiMAX and focus instead on LTE, in order to take advantage of the economies of scale provided by the now mainstream next generation mobile standard.
Taiwanese carrier Chunghwa Telecom has demonstrated LTE in a field trial enabled by Alcatel-Lucent’s equipment, supporting a wide variety of LTE devices from various Taiwanese terminal manufacturers.
First International Telecom (Fitel), one of the six WiMAX licensees in Taiwan will start operations in Hsinchu City, northern Taiwan on September 9, followed by Taipei. The operator has set up 40 WiMAX base stations in Hsinchu and will expand the network to 80. In Taipei, Fitel has set up 50 WiMAX base stations.
Taiwanese operator Far EasTone (FET) this week launched its commercial WiMAX service in Taichung city, delivering entertainment focused content such as music and movies as well as wireless internet access.
Vodafone, the world’s largest operator in terms of revenues, struck a deal with Chunghwa Telecom on Thursday, bringing the Big Red brand to the Taiwanese market.
Taiwanese Mobile WiMAX operator VMax Telecom teamed up with Korean equipment manufacturer Samsung on Monday to demonstrate what they claim is the industry’s first Mobile WiMAX roaming service.
Michael Lai, the charismatic CEO of P1, a 2.3GHz WiMAX operator in Malaysia, is candid about the size of the challenge facing the WiMAX community. “This year is a defining year for WIMAX,” he says. “It’s got to happen and it’s got to happen big.”
Clearwire is reportedly in talks with Global Mobile, one of six mobile WiMAX licensees in Taiwan, to strike up a strategic alliance. This may result in the US WiMAX operator taking an equity stake in Global Mobile, which is planning to increase its current level of registered capital (NT$1.13bn) by NT$1bn-1.9bn to help fund its WiMAX infrastructure rollout.
Far EasTone, a Taiwanese mobile operator, has said its WiMAX rollout plans are running a year behind schedule. The operator had previously said it was looking for commercial WiMAX launch Q1 2009.
The National Communications Commission (NCC), Taiwan’s regulator, has given the go-ahead to VMAX to start rolling out WiMAX base stations and related infrastructure in its licensed areas in the island’s northern region