Cable's push and prayer for WiMAX

From all indications, the Clearwire/Xohm WiMAX merger deal should be completed by the end of the year. Cable operators are eager to get the ability to bundle wireless services with their current triple play offerings, but may have a limited window of opportunity to exploit a WiMAX offering.

Comcast and Time Warner put out large sums to invest in the "new" Clearwire, so both companies are eager to take advantage of a nationwide broadband network. The master theory is to keep customers from straying or dropping TV, phone and internet services by reselling cable-branded phone and wireless broadband services from Clearwire. If a customer has the opportunity to buy cable-branded/bundled wireless phone service, they are less likely to pick up VoIP/landline-esque service - and also have less of an opportunity to migrate to wireless broadband services (and off of broadband cable).

How much of an advantage cable companies might have is subject to debate. Wireless phone carriers have stated their intention to migrate to LTE-based services as rapidly as possible, but their deployment pacing may be based upon the relative success - or failure - of WiMAX and Clearwire.

For more:
- Ars Technica discusses cable's newfound WiMAX embrace.  Article

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