A Critical Look at WiFi's Successor
"Earlier this week, Baltimore became the first American WiMAX city. To connect to the service, citizens have to use Sprint, which is charging $35 per month for home access and $45 per month for roaming connections. This is hardly more cost-effective than Wi-Fi. In fact, Comcast's high-speed Internet is actually less expensive than Sprint's WiMAX – its prices start at $20 per month. Sprint is also targeting people with less discretionary income: like MetroPCS, a cell phone provider, users don't need to sign a contract with Sprint. And they can obtain daily passes, which cost an outlandish $10, if they can't commit to $35 or $45 each month.
The bill isn't tallied yet: on top of the initial charge, you need a $60 laptop card or an $80 modem to use the network.
According to countless reports, WiMAX should be cheaper than Wi-Fi. But in Baltimore, Sprint is poised to make a fortune off the technology, without charging any less than its Wi-Fi competitors."
Companies, of course, should (and will) profit from WiMAX technology. But while Sprint capitalizes off techies who are stoked about WiMAX's far-reaching capabilities, it should also provide more affordable options to people with lower incomes."