Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Lucky Philadelphia, Unlucky USA!

EarthLink shutting down Philadelphia Wi-Fi network

Last Updated: Tuesday, May 13, 2008 | 1:28 PM ET Comments0Recommend7

Municipal Wi-Fi — once hailed as the future of high-speed internet access — was dealt another blow on Tuesday as EarthLink Inc. announced it was pulling the plug on Philadelphia.

The Atlanta-based company said it could not find a buyer for the $17 million U.S. network and talks to give it to the city or a non-profit organization had failed.

Philadelphia officials said maintaining the network, which allows users to access the internet from virtually anywhere in the city core, would have cost taxpayers millions of dollars a year. EarthLink said it even offered to offload its Wi-Fi equipment to an unnamed party along with an additional $1 million U.S.

"It's been an unfortunate situation," EarthLink chief executive officer Rolla Huff told the Associated Press. "It was a great idea a few years ago ... but it's an idea that simply didn't make it."

EarthLink and the city announced the ambitious plan to blanket the city with Wi-Fi four years ago. The company also announced last year it was pulling the plug on a similar network in Chicago because it was too expensive to cover the city.

About 175 U.S. cities have full or partial Wi-Fi networks while a few Canadian municipalities — including Toronto, Ottawa and Fredericton — have networks of varying sizes.

Toronto Hydro Telecom, which runs the "One Zone" Wi-Fi network in Toronto's downtown core, announced it was for sale in January


One big cancer zone?

robert.maxwell@tgtsolutions.comMore information

Did you hear about the big new deal? I'm talking about the deal that
will make the whole USA one big hot spot?

In case you didn't see the story that just developed this week here's
what's happening.

Sprint and Clearwire have joined forces to build a new 'WiMax'
network. Wi-Max is a new wireless technology made to reach way beyond
anything in place today. Simply put, Wi-Max is Wi-Fi on steroids.

Here's what I mean:
Bluetooth technology will work up to a distance of about 30 feet.
A Wi-Fi signal will work up to a distance of about 300 feet. .
Now get ready for this. WiMax will work up to a distance of
2 miles.

Anyway, the idea is to cover whole metropolitan cities with a Wi-Max

The goal is to make the USA one great big hot spot. This means we're
all going to get blanketed with wireless radiation whether we like
it or not 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

This giant network will have "open access" meaning anyone
with a compatible device will be able to access it.
Web applications like email and videos will also be supported.
So it'll be very popular and no doubt will open up wireless
access to a much larger segment of the population.

The founding companies hope to have Wi-Max services available to
half the U.S. population by 2010 and the whole USA shortly thereafter.

Who's involved in this giant scheme besides Sprint and Clearwire?
Well, Comcast is contributing $1.05 billion, Intel is contributing
$1 billion, Time Warner Cable is throwing in $550 million and Google
another $500 million. Google has already invested $600 million in
Clearwire previously.

So those are your major players in this massive electropollution-
producing machine. You can figure out why they're kicking in so
much money by what they do. They know this is going to be a
massive market and they want to capitalize.

We've got a lot of work to do to educate others. You know, it's
30 miles of Wi-Max today but it'll be 300 miles of something else
in a year to two. That's just what technology does. Especially when
there's no one around to look out for the safety of all those who
will be blanketed by this giant Wi-Max cloud. Where are you, FDA?

It's paramount that you protect yourself from this invisible
but deadly toxin. It's coming and you can't stop it. But you can
protect yourself. Our children are the most vulnerable so that is
why I am reaching out to you today.


Sprint, Clearwire to build national Wi-Max network
NEW YORK — Sprint (S) and Clearwire (CLWR) are forming a new company to build a nationwide "WiMax" wireless network, with the goal of offering advanced wireless Internet services to millions beginning next year, the companies said Wednesday.

Google (GOOG), Intel (INTC), Comcast (CMCSA) and Time Warner (TWX) are major investors. Under terms of the $3.2 billion collaboration, Sprint and Clearwire will form a separate, publicly traded company — called Clearwire — to oversee the nationwide buildout.

WiMax is akin to Wi-Fi in that it offers speedy surfing. But WiMax covers a much larger area. Sprint and its partners plan to blanket the USA with WiMax, turning the core of North America into one, big hot spot.

WiMax is one of several technologies vying to be the next way to connect to the Internet on the go. A WiMax transmitter, typically located on a cellphone tower, can provide a relatively fast Internet connection over more than a square mile.

Sprint and Clearwire will contribute WiMax spectrum, the others cash. Comcast will contribute $1.05 billion; Intel, $1 billion; Time Warner Cable, $550 million; Google, $500 million. Two other investors, Bright House Networks and Trilogy Equity Partners, will contribute $100 million and $10 million, respectively, people with direct knowledge of the situation said.

The advent of a nationwide WiMax network is sure to rattle the status quo in the U.S. wireless industry, now dominated by AT&T and Verizon Wireless. According to people with direct knowledge of the plans, "open access" — meaning you can use any compatible device — will be a bedrock of the new network. Likewise, all Web applications — from e-mail to video streaming and gaming — also will be supported.

As envisioned by the companies, WiMax construction will be fast. By 2010, the group hopes to have WiMax services available to about half the U.S. population.

For Sprint, which has struggled with customer losses, the deal underscores its commitment to WiMax. CEO Dan Hesse spearheaded the effort for this industrywide collaboration.

WiMax raises the game of Comcast and Time Warner Cable. Neither has had a credible wireless strategy. Under the terms of the deal, they will buy WiMax services wholesale from Sprint.

Intel, the No. 1 chipmaker, is a big backer of WiMax. It previously invested $600 million in Clearwire. Google is pushing hard into wireless via its new wireless operating system, Android.

Contributing: Michelle Kessler in San Francisco

WiMax: Long-range wireless rolled out by companies
This new technology is similar to Wi-Fi, but its signals can travel for miles. WiMax also works differently. Anyone can set up a Wi-Fi antenna, or hot spot, in their home or business. WiMax is designed to be rolled out by big companies, such as cellphone carriers who put WiMax transmitters on their cellular towers. The carriers then sell the wireless service, often as a subscription.
Speed: About 15 Mbps
Distance: Nearly 2 miles
Best for: Long-range Internet access for laptops and cellphones
Cellular Wireless: Carriers wrangle for dominance
Cellular carriers are deploying or developing a host of other long-range wireless Internet options. They have complicated names such as Evolution-Data Optimized (EVDO) and Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA). There's a lot of behind-the-scenes squabbling over which one will power the next generation of Internet phones, sometimes referred to as 4G. If WiMax becomes standard, it may supplant some or all of these technologies.
Speed: Varies, but is similar to WiMax
Distance: Varies, but is similar to WiMax
Best for: Long-range Internet access for laptops and cellphones
Wi-Fi: Handy for access, but it uses a lot of power
When many people refer to "wireless Internet," they mean Wi-Fi. This technology is often what makes it possible to log onto the Web with a laptop at a coffee shop, hotel or airport. Wi-Fi can cover a whole building or even a city block. But it uses a lot of power, so it's not great for most cellphones.
Speed: Varies, but is usually about 54 Mbps
Distance: About 300 feet
Best for: Internet access for laptops inside a home or business
Bluetooth: Shines in short-range communication
Named after a 10th-century Danish king, this wireless technology is good at short-range communication between two devices. Bluetooth components are low-power and relatively inexpensive, which is why they're popular in cellphones and wireless headsets.
Speed: About 3 Mbps
Distance: About 30 feet
Best for: Cellphone headsets
Note - The USA Today story contained a lot of information about Wi Max, but, I could not find anything about the dangers of this technology and the harm to health and harm to the environment. Could it be, that one of the largest and most influential US newspapers has not investigated their story fully. Why are they not aware of the huge dangers involved with this technology. Why have they not reported those dangers? This Wi Max announcement is a very significant event in US history, one which may harm the health of millions of people, damage health care systems and weaken the entire country in future years.
When I worked for a small newspaper (The Watford Observer) many years ago, reporters would not have been allowed to write half a story such as this. It seems like USA Today is badly failing their own readers. They appear (from this story) to be doing nothing to warn their readers of the extremely serious dangers linked to electro magnetic radiation from WiFi Max.