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Sprint launches Xohm WiMaxAt a press event in Baltimore, Sprint launches Xohm, the company's next-generation 4G wireless broadband service based on WiMAX technology.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:03 >> Maggie Reardon: I'm Maggie Reardon with CNET News and I'm here in Baltimore where Sprint has just launched its new WiMax zone network. Now what is WiMax? Well, WiMax is a 4G wireless broadband technology. And let me tell you, if you thought that surfing the web on a 3G wireless device like this was fast, well you haven't seen anything yet. WiMax is going to be much faster. It's going to give you about 1 to 2 megabits per second worth of download, which is really fast. We're here in Baltimore, the very first city where Sprint has launched its network. And the reason Baltimore? Well, if you look around, it's a very challenging radio frequency kind of environment and you've got water all around us, we've got brick buildings and that was something that the engineers said that they really wanted to take a look at. >>So I wanted somewhere that was challenging for the engineers. And my engineers will tell you, this city is challenging. >> Maggie Reardon: Sprint has a few of its technology partners here, Intel and Nokia. So let's go take a look at what they have. We're here at one of the product demos and they've got a whole bunch of products here. We've got some of the laptops with the embedded WiMax chips. There's also the XOHM internet modem for the home. And we've got the Nokia N810 internet tablet and it looks like they're streaming some video. I'm going to take a look. Yeah, it's some video from last night's debate. You've got Tom Brokaw. Ooh, look at that. Barack Obama looks really good. John McCain too. This is good stuff. I'm here with Sriram Viswanathan of Intel and he's going to show us, driving around the city of Baltimore, how WiMax really works. He's going to show us some applications here. So what are we doing? Are we looking at some video here? >> Sriram Viswanathan: Yeah. I'm actually on a YouTube page and I'm actually in the car, in the back seat and I'm not connected to anything and I'm actually playing the video. You know, the American Nobel prize was announced and here's the video that's actually being played in, you know, real time. And I could actually have multiple video windows because the bandwidth that I'm actually getting in the car is well in excess of, you know, 5 megabits. It's actually a downstream bandwidth of 7.7 megabits per second and upstream bandwidth of 2.2 megabits per second. >> Maggie Reardon: Now we're in a car riding around the city. You've got a laptop here. I mean, do you really envision -- I hope people aren't going to be watching video on their laptop while they're driving, but what are some of the applications that would could, I mean could we see this embedded in cars or would people, would that be something that people would want to do? >> Sriram Viswanathan: Yeah I think, you know, it's actually a very good point, you know. We don't envision people actually sitting in the, you know, front of the car using their laptops. But what it does is that it opens up the possibility for your car, or your mobile environment to be connected all the time. >> Maggie Reardon: We're here in the Sprint Nextel XOHM demo home in Baltimore and we've got two devices. We've got an iPhone 3G and the Nokia N810, both internet wireless devices. And we're going to take a look to see which one actually loads up our favorite web page fastest. We're off to the races. ^M00:03:14 [ Music & Sound Effects ] ^M00:03:24 It looks like the iPhone 3G won. I'm not sure if it's the network or the device. Video is definitely the killer app when it comes to WiMax. But how much is it going to cost you? Well, if you use it just at home, it's going to be 35 dollars a month and if you want a mobile version, it'll be 45 dollars a month. And if you just happen to be in Baltimore for the day, you can get it for 10 bucks. I'm not sure if consumers are really going to bite at that price, but the technology is pretty cool. This is Maggie Reardon at CNET News. ^M00:03:50 [ Music ]