One of the biggest troubles today when it comes to using a cell phone abroad is global roaming. For one, it's really expensive. Second, only phones with GSM technology can be used in many overseas nations. But you know, 4G could change all of that.
As WiMAX backers deal with the immense amount of support garnered by rivaling LTE
(Long-Term Evolution), the battle for 4G is really heating up. Clearwire
, a seller of WiMAX services in America, has just reached out to a pair of international carriers to land a deal that could be instrumental in catapulting WiMAX on a global scale.
The memorandum of understanding (MOU) with WiMAX operators UQ Communications of Japan (UQ) and Yota of Russia identifies the objectives and activities each operator will perform towards the realization of establishing WiMAX roaming between the operators, essentially paving the way for a global agreement that would ensure WiMAX devices could roam on any WiMAX network around the globe. This kind of support could also lead to lower prices overall, which would be a real boon for those who travel frequently.
"Under the MOU, Clearwire, UQ, and Yota plan to collaborate on business and technical aspects of their respective operations to define and institute the process necessary to support international roaming and to ensure the operators’ systems and devices are able to support roaming. Additionally, the operators will work with Clearwire’s Global Alliance Partner Program members and other WiMAX operators to ensure that seamless roaming occurs in an increasing number of countries."
We're trying to keep our hopes down, but this kind of agreement could really revolutionize things. Just think--if Clearwire can nail this down, it'll put a great deal of pressure on the AT&T's and Verizon's of the world to follow suit.