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Wireless Networking Communications The Internet Hardware

Motorola Field Tests Wireless Broadband At 300Mbps 138

Posted by timothy
from the are-we-there-yet-are-we-there-yet-are-we-there-yet dept.
cft_128 writes "Motorola Labs just finished field testing its new ODFM (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing) wireless broadband technology that prove it can attain 300Mbps. This is only a test, but it is an order of magnitude faster than the fiber to the premises that Verizon is now starting to offer. They do mention that the final network would only see 20Mbps sustained and 100Mbps peak."
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Motorola Field Tests Wireless Broadband At 300Mbps

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    when does this technology hit the streets?

    • Why, Jimmy ... more Spam, of course!

      spam, spam, spam, spam
      spam, spam spam, spam... ;)

      • hmmm, getting spam while driving - a whole new level of road rage.
      • son: Daddy, Daddy!!! I was outside and heard a big boom in the sky, like a thunder!!! It scared the hell out of me!

        daddy: Hey kid, come down, the sky is clear! (...Well, this might explains why the Internet went down for a moment not too long ago...) You probably heard a broadcast storm, a DoS or... dammit, perhaps a worm is seeking the wireless OFDM network trying to infiltrate computers in the area!!!

        son: Should I shutdown my Linux toy?

        daddy: Don't worry about it but Run Forrest Run and close the Wi

    • I'm not qualified to judge based on the technical information given in the story, but because it's a press release and likely just hype, I'd say 10 to 15 years.
  • "Wireless" (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Capt'n Hector (650760) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:32PM (#9817677)
    Suddenly, the iPhone is making a whole lot of sense.
  • ODFM???? (Score:5, Informative)

    by gotr00t (563828) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:33PM (#9817681) Journal
    Wouldn't it actually be called OFDM because its supposed to be an acronym for "Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing?"

    (referring to the text in the article)

  • by mcg1969 (237263) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:34PM (#9817696)
    Can't be too long. They think they patented all OFDM technology, it would seem.
  • by lofi-rev (797197) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:35PM (#9817699) Journal

    "..traveling at typical highway speeds (in excess of 100 kilometers per hour or 62 mph)."

    With a connection like that you could easily set up some pretty cool homebrew telemetric systems. Maybe have a community database of good restaurants?

    "Car - please direct me to the nearest Thai restaurant favored by Slashdot readers who enjoy icefishing..."

  • 300Mbps ? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by arazor (55656) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:36PM (#9817704)
    Damn that is extremely fast but here in rural south east Ohio I would settle for just 1Mbps. I'm currently stuck at 28.8k and thats on a good day with my USR V.Everything Courier modem sigh...
    • Re:300Mbps ? (Score:1, Flamebait)

      by DevilM (191311)
      Why are these always comments along these lines? Like technology? Don't have what you want in your area? Move!
      • "Don't have what you want in your area? Move!"

        I know a guy who is well off. He drives a Hummer to work. He's also VERY technically saavy. Yet, he lives somewhere where he can only get 56k, tops. Should he just move? Well I doubt he'll find an apartment that takes bison.

        I dare you to tell him to move just to upgrade his internet connection.
    • Damn that is extremely fast but here in rural south east Ohio I would settle for just 1Mbps. I'm currently stuck at 28.8k and thats on a good day with my USR V.Everything Courier modem sigh...

      Ha! Even if I lived in a Stepford [stepfordwivesmovie.com] (with real non-evil people), I would pack my bags immediately if I had to surf at 28.8k!

  • by Shuasha (564968) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:36PM (#9817709)
    That's the most retarded thing I've seen in a long time. Fiber can take more than 10 Gb/sec.. The paid offering for fiber to the prem is just slow.. they don't want to cannibalize their paid commercial optical products. You can't compare a current product offering to a something that's being tested. The marketing people haven't been involved yet.
    • What I think is retarded is people who can't seem to read the post. It says it's order of magnitudes faster than the FTTP (Fiber to the premises) that Verizon is rolling out, which they claim will carry up to 30Mbps, though they didn't release prices for anything above 15mbps. It did not compare it directly to the transfer rates of fiber or any other data line. Try a little bit of critical thinking before you post next time. They are talking about service levels, not maximum transfer rates for any one type
      • by jrockway (229604) * <jon-nospam@jrock.us> on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:57PM (#9817844) Homepage Journal

        > If i have 10 people on a 100Mb cat5 run, they can each get 10 mbps.

        If it's switched, and it's between the users, then they can each get 100Mbps to each other. To the "main server", whatever that may be, they do share 100Mbps, though.

        > If I have 30 people on a 54mbps wireless connection they can all get 54mpbs.

        Wrong. Everyone shares the 54mbps minus overhead. If any of those 30 get over 1Mbps you'll be lucky.
        • If it's switched, and it's between the users, then they can each get 100Mbps to each other. To the "main server", whatever that may be, they do share 100Mbps, though.

          Obviously you've never tried to manage a large scale switched network! And by large i mean several miles.

          No matter how nice your switch is - even uber-expensive Alteon switches - the backplane is NEVER what they say it is. Ever. Ever ever.

          I've worked at an experimental isp that delivered 100mbps to the home. I've worked at a testing lab tha
          • What kind of test setup did you use? I worked at [large Ethernet switch/router company] for 6 years, and one of our standard tests was learned unicast traffic between port-pairs. (Simulating two machines talking at full speed, since 90% of the network cards out there won't actually do 100% traffic.) We typically had no trouble doing linerate traffic on 30+ ports on a blade, or between blades. The marketing numbers for backplane bandwidth were based on what we could actually get (don't think that wasn't
      • It's only an order of magnitude faster than Verizon's offering if there are less than 10 people using it. Wireless spectrum is a shared medium, FTTP is not. Yes, it all gets shared at the internet uplink anyway, but that's beside the point.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        It says it's order of magnitudes faster than the FTTP (Fiber to the premises) that Verizon is rolling out, which they claim will carry up to 30Mbps, though they didn't release prices for anything above 15mbps. It did not compare it directly to the transfer rates of fiber or any other data line.

        Although this might not be the same as what Verizon is offering, Surewest Broadband has been implementing FTTP in Sacramento, CA which supports 100Mbps, although only 10Mbps is used for Internet traffic (some or mos
      • Talk about retarded. If you would have read MY post, you would have seen that I mentioned marketing. With FTTP, they can easily get 1 Gbit+ to people's houses, with little or no more cost. The 30 Mbit limit is a marketing decision so they don't lose the $$ from the commercial users that pay $3000+ per month for a simple gig pipe. I sell high bandwidth optical connections for a living.. I think I know a bit about what I'm talking about. My company raised their rates on gigabit links for just this reason
  • Awesome but... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Verizon is offering service in some parts of CA and FL. This is a far cray from nation vide service. They are just testing the market, and it might take years for this service to get to the rest of us.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:39PM (#9817730)
    Maybe ./ needs a Motorola logo...

    Surprised no one mentioned the new V3 [phonescoop.com] nor the A780 [phonescoop.com].
  • by ShadowRage (678728) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:51PM (#9817805) Homepage Journal
    Today near the Motorola Testing Facility, birds and other wildlife suddenly spontaniously combusted....
  • by John Seminal (698722) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @08:56PM (#9817841) Journal
    First, I would be happy if I could get 14.4k/sec with my wireless phone, but they charge a monthly fee just to use their "special services", a data charge per kilobyte, and the normal air minutes. I would use my cell phone to check emails, and that would be about it. Maybe to read the newspaper. So for me, I don't need anything faster. But I don't want to pay three times for the same service. I can only imagine how much any faster internet service would cost. I fear the day of the $100 a month cell phone bill is near.

    There is a second concern that I can think of. If a phone is able to get broadband speed and has a videocamera attached, it could cause privacy problems. Do we really want a new kind of voyer with these devices??

    What else could broadband on a phone be used for?? I doubt anyone will use their cell phone as a computer. A phone is first a phone and secondly all other things. Plus, cell phones have such limited battery use times, that I doubt anyone would really use those other features for more than a very limited time.

    • by cbreaker (561297) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @09:02PM (#9817871) Journal
      Who said this was for phones?

      Wireless broadband COULD be used for phones *I guess* but it's more likely to be used for people's home PC's or notebook PC's, at least at first.

      Wireless technology has a MUCH better chance at rapid deployment in most areas because all you need to do is set up some antennas - whereas with fiber or other wired networks you have to lay down millions of meters of lines to reach everyone's home.

      I believe that it's going to be the method of network access for the future. Cheap deployment, fast, and mobile.

      Unless you live in NYC or some other major metropolis, don't expect very high speed internet access within the next 10 years or more if you're waiting for verizon's fiber. But if Motorola deploys it's wireless system on a wide scale, you could see it in half that time.
    • "I fear the day of the $100 a month cell phone bill is near." You're a little late on this one. know several people who've gone over that on more than one occasion (myself excluded).
    • In Romania we have this company called Zapp that use CMDA and they have a 10 hours (600 minutes) at approx 50-100kbps depending on the network load at the time for 15$ per month. :-)

      I use it for my laptop when I'm away from home and as a backup for my main internet connection.

    • "First, I would be happy if I could get 14.4k/sec with my wireless phone, but they charge a monthly fee just to use their "special services", a data charge per kilobyte, and the normal air minutes. I would use my cell phone to check emails, and that would be about it. Maybe to read the newspaper. So for me, I don't need anything faster. But I don't want to pay three times for the same service."

      Not sure who you're using, but ATTWS and Cingular charge once, and it doesn't take up airtime. For like $8/mo. I
    • Your second point is completely ridiculous; just because a technology could make 1 type of social deviance easier doesn't mean it is a bad idea. I suppose you would also say that peer-to-peer clients are a bad idea because copyright infringement is made easier with them. This thinking completely ignores the numerous benefits of p2p networks. These notions completely sidestep the concept of personal responsibility. If a society decides that a particular activity is not acceptible, punish the individuals
    • Or the dept of homeland security can impose a rule that encrypting cell phone content is illegal and scan all images transmitted for voyer content. That would have been funny 4 years ago.

    • Plus, cell phones have such limited battery use times, that I doubt anyone would really use those other features for more than a very limited time.

      Right. In addition, OFDM is well known to have a large peak-to-average power ratio. This means it is very difficult to amplify the signal efficiently. The power efficiency of OFDM is very bad and this is one of the current hurdles to get OFDM into mobile battery powered devices.

      I will believe it when I see it. OFDM technologies can make many claims about

    • Why ... does everyone assume that we need incumbent cell phone companies and proprietary networks and phones for wireless voice? I'm enjoying using a wifi handheld for voice in lots of places, free ... WiMAX, or something like it, changes the game, when combined with VOIP. 'sallreadyhappening.
  • The question is, are they using the same method of measuring things as the Wifi market, or the "My 20 inch monitor is really only 18.7" ? If they're going by Wifi standards, 20mbps suddenly is starting to look like 8 or less... not bad by any means, but hardly the great speeds mentioned in the fiber to the curb article of yesterweek.
  • A wireless connection that is faster than fiber, but isn't.

    Isn't that like a car that runs only on water, but doesn't?!

  • by femto (459605) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @09:14PM (#9817929) Homepage
    300Mps in the lab is meaningless. If you have a GHz of spectrum available one can easily achieve 300Mbit/s using 20 year old technology.

    The proper question is "What is the spectral efficiency?"

    Spectral efficiency is a measure of the data throughput per unit of bandwidth. It is measured in bits per second per Hertz (bit/s/Hz).

    Existing WLANS get around 4-5 bit/s/Hz under ideal conditions. State of the art lab demonstrations get in the range 20-40 bit/s/Hz. To put this in context, 20-40 bit/s/Hz is the equivalent of >400Mbit/s in an existing 22MHz WiFi channel.

    So, does anyone know the spectral efficiency of Motorola's system?

    • by Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @09:25PM (#9817983) Homepage Journal
      >So, does anyone know the spectral efficiency of Motorola's system?

      The article says they did this in a 20 MHz channel, corresponding to 15 bps/Hz. That's far outside the range I'm used to.
      • I've done a PhD in wireless OFDM technology, and there is no way they could be achieving 15 bps/Hz using conventional OFDM. The signal to noise ratio and multipath of a wireless environment is to harsh. At the efficiency levels they are describing they must be using some kind of MIMO (multiple input multiple output) technology. This is eluded to in the article in the fact that they are using multiple antennas.

        MIMO allows multiple channels to be transmitted over the same bandwidth by expoiting spacial dive

    • It is measured in bits per second per Hertz (bit/s/Hz).

      Maybe I'm just an idiot, but wouldn't it be simpler to just use "bps/Hz" or "baud/Hz"? That's one funky looking unit there...
      • How about bpc? Bits per Cycle. Bits/Sec divided by Cycles/Sec equals Bits/Cycle. Anyhow. Baud does not equal Bits per Second. Baud equals frequency-changes per second. A 56kbps modem actually transmits at 4700 baud, IIRC.
        • I prefer bit/s/Hz, as I consider it to be more consistent than bps/Hz. Why should one 'per' be represented by a 'p' while another is represented by a slash? I use slash over 'p' as it allows direct cancelling of units during calculations.

          I also prefer Hertz to cycles as Hertz is an SI unit but cycles is not.

          I'm not going to be a unit Nazi and say that either your opinions are wrong. I am of the opinion though that consistent use of SI units comes into its own when carrying units though complex calcul

        • No....

          Baud equals *symbols* per second. Once you start to get into modulations that get multiple bits per symbol, baud != bits per second.

          56 kbps modems actually transmit at 8kbaud (7 bits per symbol, 8000 symbols per second), using PCM modulation, instead of the QAM/trellis modulation all the other high speed modems use. 2400 bps modems were 600 baud, 9600 modems were 2400 baud, 14.4 modems were 2400 baud. I believe 28.8 and 33.6 run at 3600 baud, which is about the most you can expect from the analog
  • Let's just hope it doesn't drop packets every 60 seconds (+/- 30 secs) like my wireless-g set up. Makes game playing, especially FPSs a less than optimal experience.

    Other than that I love wireless.
    • Re:Game playing (Score:2, Informative)

      by Cyberop5 (520141) *
      I've currently got a Motorola Canopy system (precursor to this, I imagine) and its pretty solid. It has a max throughput of 3MB/s - shared. But you can cluster antenas for more connections. It doesn't drop packets and gets great pings, much better than my Linksys 802.11g AP. Point-to-Point DES encryption. High Index BFSK modulation.

      I do, however I see the actual hardware go offline far to frequently, although I suspect it has to do more with the ISP than the equipment.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    300Mbps until someone fancies a microwave burrito... that's 4 minute of downtime right there.

    Multiply that by a decent sized coverage area, TV dinners, reheated coffee, yesterday's pizza and those pastry things that explode if they're in the microwave for too long, but are stone cold if they're not in long enough.... and you're looking at very little actual usable airtime.
  • by berkeleyjunk (250251) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @09:53PM (#9818157)
    I really don't think this can be used for mobile nodes. Power consumption issues with OFDM might relegate this technology for use only with fixed nodes. I don't think we will have a usable laptop adapter for this technology. I have experience using a 802.11a adapter on my laptop and it sucked the life out of my laptop's battery at express speed.
  • by RhettLivingston (544140) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @10:10PM (#9818277)
    To compare this with fiber is just ridiculous. Even if it is cheap fiber (I would hope they are smart enough to put down something with at least a couple of orders of magnitude of growth room), the fiber will have growth room way beyond the 300MB speed of this technology. The numbers being reported now are the maximum potentials. Just one more case of rolling out an infrastructure with no room to grow.
  • by bastardadmin (660086) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @10:25PM (#9818368) Journal
    There goes free time for all IT Workers.
    High Speed VPN access from anywhere, oh joy.
    Now what am I going to do when I want to sleep off my hangover on the commuter train?
  • This doesn't mean a 300mbit internet connection anymore than 802.11g means 100mbit. Hell most wireless internet connections are NOWHERE NEAR as fast as the 11mbit pipe their running on now.
  • ... but I'm working on the designs for the Verizon Fiber Initiative right now. I actually just pulled 4 hours of OT drafting, came home & this was the first article I saw.

    Jaysyn
  • by Micah (278)
    Now can someone PLEASE get something like this down here to Ecuador, where I'm still paying $80/month for an unreliable 96k cable connection?
  • by putaro (235078) on Tuesday July 27, 2004 @11:39PM (#9818753) Journal
    Shared wireless bandwidth doesn't sound that appealing. I just upgraded my home DSL service here in Tokyo to 24Mbps (over copper). Yahoo BB is offering 45Mbps over copper. And, you can get fiber at 100Mbps (http://www.asahi-net.or.jp/en/tepco.html) from TEPCO (the electrical utility).

    I suspect that one of the reasons this is available here is the incredible density you find in Tokyo. I'm about 3 blocks away from the local CO. Rural areas probably are not getting these speeds

    Of course, the key question is what's upstream from you - right now I'm only pulling down 800Kbps across several BitTorrent downloads so your mileage will definitely vary.
  • Goofy article (Score:3, Interesting)

    by pavera (320634) on Wednesday July 28, 2004 @12:01AM (#9818880) Homepage Journal
    Yeah, Verizon is rolling out their service at 30mbps, and this can attain 300mbps in the lab... well, I've seen 1tbps in the lab over fiber... so touch that wireless! Anyway, I work at a ftth provider, we have 1gbps dedicated to every home, switched network, not shared (like wireless is).

    We give up to 50mbps for internet... as our bandwidth gets cheaper, we'll be bumping that up to 100mbps, wireless can't hold anything to fiber.. besides, you can't do reliable voice over wireless (latency issues) and certainly not video which we provide as well, more than 5ms of latency and your video stream is toast...

    Wireless will never be a reliable triple play provider, which is the holy grail in telecommunications right now.
    • ... besides, you can't do reliable voice over wireless (latency issues) and certainly not video which we provide as well, more than 5ms of latency and your video stream is toast...

      Are you sure about that? I'm not sure about you, but my cell phone works fine (wireless digital audio) and there are many devices that send audio over WiFi (like the Airport Express). Also I must say watching broadcast HDTV works just great and I've watched many streaming videos over a WiFi connection.

      • well, I'm talking packet voice not digital cell service. VoIP will work over a WLAN, but it can be flaky, like a cell phone, which is generally unacceptable as a carrier of last resort.

        I'm also talking about IP Video which your streaming video would qualify for, but try comparing the quality of that streaming video to a DVD or HDTV. Yeah, you can receive broadcast HDTV but that isn't IP Video, it isn't packetized, which is where the latency kills you. If you get packets arriving a few milliseconds late
  • And what upstream? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Gldm (600518) on Wednesday July 28, 2004 @12:46AM (#9819122)
    I've had a 10mbit downstream from optimum online since 1997 or 1998. I've rarely needed more downstream as most sites can't push anywhere near that. Even a big server like ATI or Nvidia's driver hosting can barely hit 6mbps to me, even with TCP recieve window tweaks. [speedguide.net]

    When are we going to see decent upstream at the home? 128kbps doesn't cut it. I rarely see any offering at all over 256kbps upstream. OOL offers 1024 but as soon as you begin actually USING it they cap you back to 150 to keep the network from congesting to death.

    But Joe McSixpack doesn't care about that, he just wants to grab porn faster and maybe let his kids get on aol and watch some crappy realvideo trash without whining. The ISPs are so paranoid about people running servers on their networks and losing their ability to charge 5000% markup for the same connection for "business" users even though they still block ports like 80 and 25. Woe betide the industry if people realised that 1.5mbps T-1 they've been paying hundreds or thousands a month for since the early 90s is now SLOW.

    It's gotten to the point where I've pretty much given up hope of ever seeing a real broadband connection in my lifetime. By the time I can afford something with decent upstream, the idiots in washington [theinquirer.net] will have ISPs so paranoid that everyone will be mandatorily placed behind a NAT and their servers will continually portscan you looking for servers and p2p apps.

    • i know it's nothing like the downstream speeds yer talking about, but speakeasy [speakeasy.net] offers server-friendly residential DSL packages with 768K upstream, which is better than any other DSL provider i've seen. and it's a reliable connection, too, in the month or two i've had it under heavy load.

      i'm not a fan of the big corps in general. AT&T [att.net] royally screwed me with a crappy DSL connection, pitiful upstream speed, non-documented port-blocking, an abysmal AUP once i started running servers, and a lock-in con

  • by Animats (122034) on Wednesday July 28, 2004 @01:30AM (#9819312) Homepage
    Of course it's really fast when you have the whole band to yourself. You could get 10Mb/s over analog cell phones if you could tie up all 860 channels. Big deal.
  • This is only a test, but it is an order of magnitude faster than the fiber to the premises that Verizon is now starting to offer.

    Are you seriously comparing lab's theoretical numbers to something being delivered to end users?

    Do you doubt that FTTP can scale higher? What speeds are they pushing over fiber in the lab? No my friend, wireless will always lag behind.

  • I work for an wireless ISP using Motorola Canopy. Canopy equipment can go up to 4 Mbps, up and down, and it works and works well. The down side is that it is expensive, a "fixed" wireless product, and requires Line of Sight to the customer. Let me say that last thing is the kicker. While the equipment may work fantastic, and we have customers working up to 7 miles away, if they can't actually see the tower, you can forget about signing up that customer. Trees, hills, buildings in the way? Lost customer.

    And
  • fixed wireless (Score:2, Interesting)

    by sloggo (800927)
    I have used fixed wireless as my connection to the internet for over 4 years now. It is a 5mbs link connected to a mountaintop center point about 20 miles away using MMDS technology. I get peak speeds that approach what 3 T-1s would provide at a reasonable monthly fee. Downloads from capable servers provide data at rates of around half a megabyte a second. It is extremely reliable and costs about the same as a cable hookup that would provide only one tenth the speed. For those who say it is not as fast
  • as an amateur radio operator, i am concerned about what bandwidth they use.

    how much bandwidth does it take, and what what frequencys does it operate on?

    sounds cool though, but theres only a limited amount of RF

    i want some technical information

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