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WiMAX boss blasts Qualcomm

WiMAX Forum boss Ron Resnick bombarded Qualcomm with criticism at a meeting with analysts in London on Wednesday. No surprises there, Qualcomm is a strong opponent of WiMAX and Resnick is paid to promote it, so comity was never on the cards.

“It’s being used now to slow down WiMAX deployments,” was his response to questions about IPR issues and the decision of WiMAX player Soma Networks to pay Qualcomm for licences. “Qualcomm claimed for two weeks at the ITU that WiMAX didn’t meet the minimum performance criteria for IMT-2000,” he said.

Although Qualcomm is not shaking down WiMAX vendors for royalty payments, the company believes it has an IPR portfolio that applies to the various technologies that use OFDM/OFDMA, including WiMAX. And the deal with Soma might mean that it’s only a matter of time before the company starts squeezing other players for cash.

Resnick further referred to the now well known dustup in the IEEE802.20 standards committee, and did not spare other companies either. “LTE is different, it’s single carrier FDMA in the uplink, which is in order to give certain companies their piece of the IPR,” he said.

Promising 802.16m for 2010, Resnick now points the finger at spectrum regulators. “We’re really only interested in the 2.5GHz TDD band,” he claimed, adding, “It’s not IPR, it’s spectrum.”

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