According to recent findings from Allied Business Intelligence, Inc. (ABI), the arrival of broadband technologies to residential neighborhoods has been delayed by problematic rollouts, raising the value of the wireless broadband market. Limitations of conventional wired broadband technologies are evident. Many service providers, consultants, and their customers continue to deal with line congestion and slow deployments of DSL and cable modems.

As a result, service providers are turning to wireless technologies: LMDS (local multipoint distribution system), MMDS (multichannel multipoint distribution system), and PCS (personal communication system) systems operating in the various ISM bands (900 MHz, 2.4, 5.1, and 5.8 GHz). Analysts expect these technologies to gain more than 9 million broadband subscribers by 2005, according to a new ABI report.

MMDS, including the 3.4-3.7 GHz worldwide standard for fixed wireless access, is expected to lead the market with 70% share in 2005. LMDS will continue to make inroads for high-value customers, accounting for 60% of subscriber revenues in 2005. Due to its generous spectrum allotment, the 5.8 GHz band is receiving the most attention as unlicensed broadband local loop. Systems operating in this band are expected to account for close to half a million subscribers in 2005.

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