Tell me a story about WiMAX’s pit dad. It’s very interesting.——
I don’t know if you have found that now we often mention the 5G competition between China and the United States. However, apart from Qualcomm, there seems to be no big communication equipment manufacturer in the United States. Qualcomm, which mainly relies on chips and patents, is not a device manufacturer. China has ZTE Huawei, Ericsson is Swedish, Nokia is Finnish. There is not one in the United States.
Why is that?
In fact, Lao Mei used to be an international telecommunications equipment company. This company has a very long history and strong strength. It is the famous Lucent company.
The world-famous Bell Laboratory is its home.
Moreover, if we count it according to the North American camp, the dead Party of the Americans has caught us, Ms. Meng’s Canadian, and there once was a very powerful equipment manufacturer, you should have heard of it, called Nortel.
So, here comes the question, Lucent and Nortel. Where are the two famous companies going now?
Let me tell you: Lucent was acquired, and Nortel went bankrupt in 2009 .
Although there are many reasons for the failure of the two companies, one important factor is that they mistakenly bet on a communication technology that now looks like “pitfalls”. This technology is the protagonist of our article today – WiMAX.
The story begins in the 1980s.
At that time, the first generation mobile communication technology (1G) began to appear. The representative of 1G is American AMPS technology and Nordic NMT technology. In addition, there are TACS in Britain, JTACS in Japan and C-Netz in West Germany.
Although there are hundreds of schools of thought contending about technology, to put it bluntly, they mainly focus on the United States, Europe and Japan. They are the most powerful and compete with each other. And other countries and regions, including China, have nothing to do but watch the bustle.
Later, in the 2G era (early 1990s), Europe launched GSM (Global Mobile Communications System), while the United States was unwilling to show weakness and launched CDMA. Competition for communication standards has become a contest between PKs in the United States and Europe. Although Japan also has PDC technology, it has not been competitive basically.
Then, in the era of 3G (the beginning of this century), the game is even more exciting.
At that time, with the success of GSM, Europe continued to take the lead in the telecommunications industry. The top telecommunications companies, including Ericsson (Sweden), Nokia (Finland), Alcatel (France), Siemens (Germany), are all European. Ericsson, in particular, was the world’s leading telecommunications equipment manufacturer.
On the American side, only Motorola and Lucent are the telecom equipment manufacturers, which are weaker than Europe in overall strength. However, the United States has a leading edge in the computer industry, such as Intel, IBM, Microsoft and other IT giants, are all American.
It should be noted that there is another company in the United States, Qualcomm (which introduced the standard of CDMA). Although Qualcomm is not a device manufacturer, it owns many patents and speaks with great weight.
Japan, in fact, has withdrawn from the game. Why, we should also know that the trade war was half dried up by the US, and its aging and economic bubbles were already in the overall recession. Some Japanese telecommunications companies with certain strength in the 2G era basically went bankrupt at this time.
However, a new player has emerged, that is our China.
After the reform and opening up, China has the largest market in the world, and has also emerged as a telecommunications equipment supplier represented by Huawei and ZTE (which was relatively weak at that time). Communications technology has developed rapidly and gradually gained voice in the field of global communications.
The situation at that time was as follows: a group of European telecommunications manufacturers jointly launched WCDMA technology. With their strength, WCDMA will surely become the 3G standard, not to think about it. And those in Europe want the whole world to monopolize technology with WCDMA.
In the old American style, of course, do not agree with it – all use WCDMA, I also play a P?
Therefore, on the basis of CDMA, it has developed the CDMA2000. It intends to continue to confront and take more initiative with Europe as in the era of 2G.
However, Americans also understand that their own strength is not enough to compete with WCDMA, what to do?
The old Americans soon thought of China, pull an ally!
It is said that in order to make CDMA2000 one of the 3G standards when finalizing the global 3G standard, the head of the American delegation arranged for his Chinese delegation members to find the head of the Chinese delegation privately and make an appointment for a dinner. Above the dinner table, Americans went straight to the theme: “Don’t your TDs want to be standard too? Let’s stick together. Europe can’t control us! You see, we support TD-SCDMA, you support CDMA2000, we come into the standard together, we have to Balabala…”.
Of course, the United States does not care whether China’s TD standard can become a standard or not, they will not promote it anyway. The adoption of Chinese standards is nothing more than a number of documents in the International Telecommunication Union, which have no substantive impact on them. With China’s support, let our own CDMA2000 become the standard, that is the result it wants.
And China? Because it is the first impact criterion, whether it can succeed or not has no bottom in mind. So, since Lao Mei is willing to help, both sides take what they need, so do it!
Thus, the two sides reached a tacit understanding.
The next day, the meeting will be held in the United States. The representative of China made a statement, saying that the international community would be more right to operate at the same time with multiple international standards, which is balabala. The representative of the United States immediately said: “The Chinese are right! Support! ” and then applause, leaving the Europeans with a blank face.
Therefore, in May 2000, European standard WCDMA, American standard CDMA2000 and winning bid TD-SCDMA jointly became the international standard of 3G.
Therefore, the competition for international telecommunications standards has never been merely a technical problem, but a process of struggle, confrontation, collusion and compromise between powerful countries. It is related to the overall situation of the development of domestic telecommunications enterprises. We must adopt various means, including conspiracy and conspiracy, to strive for a favorable situation for our country. The game of power is a game in which powerless countries are not even qualified to participate.
Let’s not go too far. Let’s go back to the subject. Our protagonist hasn’t appeared yet.
As a matter of principle, the three standards have been set. Everyone goes back to their homes, finds their mothers, and finishes. But the story is not over.
Within a few years, the American IT Gang headed by Intel jumped out of the mix. They launched a highly competitive WiMAX technology to challenge the Telecom Gang.
Where is WiMAX sacred?
WiMAX is Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access, a global microwave interconnection access. The name of is a bit long. It has another name. It’s much simpler. It’s just five numbers – 802.16.
The relationship between 802.16 and 802.11 (Wi-Fi) can be seen from the name 802.16. Yes, WiMAX and Wi-Fi are the communication protocol standards defined by IEEE.
Wi-Fi is very familiar to everyone. It’s LAN technology. WiMAX is a metropolitan area network technology.
In fact, WiMAX is the enhanced version of Wi-Fi.
To what extent? Wi-Fi can transmit hundreds of meters without obstacles at most, WiMAX, theoretically it can transmit 50 kilometers . In addition, it also has the characteristics of high transmission rate, rich and diverse services.
WiMAX uses many new technologies, such as OFDM orthogonal frequency division multiple access and MIMO multi-antenna. It greatly improves the data transmission capability and has been sought after by the industry.
With obvious technological advantages and broad market prospects, WiMAX has rapidly become a new favorite in the communication circle, greatly shaking the status of 3GPP and 3GPP2, and constituting a substantial threat to the traditional three major 3G standards.
With the alarm bell ringing, the traditional telecommunication manufacturers quickly wake up and organize a counterattack. Not long after, 3GPP launched LTE technology to compete with WiMAX. All of the above mentioned OFDM and MIMO are used in LTE, which is regarded as “mastering the skills of the barbarians to control the barbarians”.
As mentioned earlier, WiMAX is simply understood as an enhanced version of Wi-Fi, so it is not actually a mobile communication technology, but based on the IP network, is the “invasion” of IT technology into the telecommunications field .
WiMAX technology is dominated by Intel, IBM, Motorola, Nortel and some North American operators. Intel and Motorola started the WiMAX project by injecting $900 million. Then, American operators injected another $3 billion, and the fire burned up all of a sudden.
To boost WiMAX, Intel brazenly claims that WiMAX chips are 10 times cheaper than traditional 3G chips.
Now, the whole industry is more boiling. A large number of WiMAX related research papers have been published, and many enterprises have invested in this so-called “3.5G” technology.
Looking at the good situation, the United States is certainly excited. Maybe WiMAX can completely reverse the traditional communication!
As a result, the United States began to support WiMAX at all costs.
First of all, we should foster WiMAX into a formal international standard. After all, if the name is not right, the standard is not equal to no legal status, there is no legal frequency, and it is impossible to play at all.
But it was 2007. As we said before, in 2000, the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) had already finalized three major 3G standards. To be exact, the deadline for submission of 3G standards is 30 June 1998 (ITU announced the world). Now to add standards, do you think the ITU is your home?
The American Emperor deserves to be the Emperor. This seemingly impossible task has been solved by it.
With its own strength, the United States has forcibly opened the door of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), convened a special meeting, accepted WiMAX as the Fourth International Telecommunications Standard of 3G, and distributed it to the global frequency as desired.
So, if you don’t accept it, who will make it the world’s hegemony?
Well, WiMAX needs money, mountains, identities, frequency bands, and so on. It’s really like “spring breeze, horseshoe disease, see all the Chang’an flowers in a day”.
The old man said that the younger brothers didn’t stand in line as soon as possible. As a result, the circle is full of storms and clouds, and the city head changes into a king’s banner.
Canada has always followed the United States, so Nortel (Canada) has been moving, selling its traditional 3G business to Alcatel, France, and then turning to WiMAX with all its heart and soul.
Asia, with the exception of mainland China, has almost become a test field for WiMAX. WiMAX has been deployed in Japan, Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines.
Taiwan, not to mention, is the only American horse who is looking forward to betting on WiMAX and scrambling to grab its license. Six operators in Taiwan, including Global Action, Wimars Telecom, Far-distance Telecom, Mass Telecom, Datong Telecom and Weida Chaoshun Telecom, have seized the WiMAX license and are ready to make a big start.
Looking at this situation, Americans began to be proud. On the one hand, they continued to shout for WiMAX. On the other hand, they encouraged TD-SCDMA operators, including China Mobile, to join WiMAX: “TD-SCDMA has no future. The only way out is to approach WiMAX.”
Why do we involve TD-SCDMA in China? Because both of them use TDD (time division duplex) mechanism, which is different from FDD of WCDMA. Therefore, there is more substitution between WiMAX and TD-SCDMA.
Of course China doesn’t like it. Why listen to you? As a result, there are no permanent friends and no permanent enemies. China’s choice is to stand with Europe this time.
Europe’s approach to the United States is very uncomfortable – let you have a CDMA2000, you have a WiMAX, endless ah? Nokia executives stood up and criticized WiMAX publicly, annoying Intel and shouting at him from both sides. The atmosphere in the whole industry is very tense. Everyone is fighting to kill each other.
The attitude of < strong > China has changed the inclined direction of WiMAX fate balance.
Careful analysis of the strength comparison at that time: global telecommunications equipment manufacturers, there are so many powerful, Ericsson (Sweden), Alcatel (France), Siemens (Germany), Huawei (China), ZTE (China), Nortel (Canada), Lucent (United States), Motorola (United States), can be calculated by breaking the finger. Moreover, Lucent was incorporated by Alcatel, and Qualcomm in the United States has some strength in the field of telecommunications. Qualcomm is also a chip and patentee, making no equipment at all.
What’s more, Qualcomm is still a traitor. Qualcomm has many vested interests in the traditional communication field. The three major 3G standards (WCDMA, CDMA2000, TD-SCDMA) are all based on its CDMA, so it does not want to develop WiMAX at all. Although Qualcomm’s own UMB (4G based on the evolution of CDMA2000) is yellow, LTE is still in its favor.
So, after the failure of negotiations between Qualcomm and the WiMAX alliance, all its chips did not support WiMAX at all, and Intel did not foresee the rise of smartphones at that time, so it did not focus on the development of mobile chips at all.
Intel, with more than enough and less than enough strength, and a group of soy sauce parties, the result is conceivable.
How can you play without equipment, chips and mature industrial chains?
So, in fact, the battle has been divided between winning and losing.
Unexpectedly, in the absence of industrial chain support, the situation of WiMAX has turned dramatically downward.
Because the network facilities can not keep up with, the chip supply can not keep up with, the industrial chain development is seriously inadequate, WiMAX experience is very poor, the WiMAX camp began to collapse.
Australia’s first operator to deploy WiMAX fired first, scolding WiMAX at international conferences, saying that indoor coverage in the area of 400 meters is not enough, with a delay of up to 1000 milliseconds. (At last year’s meeting, he praised WiMAX a lot.)
Then, in 2010, Intel, the biggest pillar of WiMAX standards, failed and announced the dissolution of WiMAX. This is funny. The leading elder brother has run away. How can we play? (This also fully proves that the United States emperor sells teammates, really can’t blink an eye.)
Then Canadian Nortel, which had been desperate to turn to WiMAX, went bankrupt.
At first glance, Malaysia, the Philippines, South Korea and other Asian countries jumped boats and ran, turning from WiMAX to TD-LTE.
Even Clearwire, the world’s largest WiMAX service provider, has “mutinied”. It shifted its business focus from WiMAX to TD-LTE. In September 2011, it announced a partnership with China Mobile to jointly promote product and equipment development based on TD-LTE standards.
What is a wall pushed by all, that’s it.
That’s good. At first, the United States boasted that TD-SCDMA had only one way to turn to WiMAX. In just a few years, it has become “WiMAX has only one way to turn to TD-LTE”. It can be said that “the wind and water turn around, who can be spared by heaven”.
The most pressing is our compatriots in Taiwan.
Taiwan has the fastest track on WiMAX, the biggest bet, and is now foolish. Want to turn around? Easier said than done. WiMAX’s industrial structure has been established, and the frequency band has also been divided out. How can we say that turning the head is turning the head?
Since the collapse of the WiMAX Empire in 2010, Taiwan has spent two years alone on WiMAX. In 2012, it was found that the total number of WiMAX users of six operators was not 150,000, even in one county in the mainland.
The world can’t sustain a move, so we should abandon WiMAX and invest in TD-LTE. However, according to the regulations of Taiwan’s regulators, only when 70% coverage is completed, can we apply for LTE conversion, which will kill the operators. Moreover, regulators have allocated the best high-end frequencies to WiMAX, and operators can’t change paths because there is no frequency to use. It’s even harder for regulators to retrieve WiMAX bands and redistribute them to TD-LTE.
In this case, the vitality of Taiwan’s telecommunications industry has been thoroughly damaged. Not only has it lost $50 billion in investment, but it has also destroyed industries and wasted time. It’s been ten years now, and it hasn’t slowed down yet.
In other words, our Taiwanese compatriots are really pitiful. Apart from the fact that WiMAX was tragically pitted by the United States Emperor, LCD panels were also pitted by Samsung Bangzi in Korea. Now only semiconductors are left to support themselves. Alas, it is also a tragic reminder to think about it.
so ah, not afraid of God’s opponent, afraid of pigs like teammates.
In fact, we can’t blame Taiwan for its foolishness. The key to the problem is that Taiwan’s strength is too weak. It is sooner or later to encounter a situation in which there is no standard on hand and no status in the ecological chain.
Do you dare to play big games with the big guys? If you lose a lot, you will lose all of your money. How can you continue to play? Plus, you have to follow the elder one, and you have no conscience. Isn’t that your own head as cannon fodder?
All in all, the WiMAX camp lost the war completely, and the word WiMAX gradually faded out of our sight.
Europe and China won the final victory, and LTE became the standard of 4G as expected, with an unshakable orthodoxy.
And on the American side, it’s bleak: Nortel is gone, Lucent is sold, motorcycles are scrapped, but Qualcomm, the traitor, is still there.
After the dust settled, the world telecommunications industry pattern has gradually become what it is now.
In a twinkling of an eye, ten years have passed. The past is like a cloud of smoke, but in retrospect it is still heartbreaking. If we had carelessly taken the wrong direction, perhaps today’s global telecommunications industry competition pattern is another scenario. We don’t necessarily have the status and advantages we have now.
Nowadays, the struggle is still going on, and the communication industry is still surging undercurrents and fighting with each other. All forces are growing and falling in one direction or another. In the future full of unknown, who can laugh to the end, can only let time tell us the answer.