WiMax to become part of 3G: official

But we're not allowed to call it '4G' yet

Long-range wireless tech WiMax has officially been sanctioned as part of 3G's development path. The International Telecommunication Union voted for it to be integrated into future standards at its latest meeting.

Although the two standards aren't strictly rivals, the move means that both can be integrated together into future hardware and 3G operators can utilise WiMax on their networks. The development will also please Intel, one of the biggest supporters of WiMax technologies.

A move of "global importance"

The WiMax Forum called the move "of global importance to operators...who look to ITU to endorse technologies before they invest in new infrastructure."

"This is a very special and unique milestone for WiMax technology," said Ron Resnick, president of the WiMax Forum. "This is the first time that a new air interface has been added to the IMT-2000 set of standards since the original technologies were selected nearly a decade ago."

"WiMax technology currently has the potential to reach 2.7 billion people. And today's announcement expands the reach to a significantly larger global population."



Dan (Twitter, Google+) is TechRadar's Former Deputy Editor and is now in charge at our sister site Lifehacker UK. Covering all things computing, internet and mobile he's a seasoned regular at major tech shows such as CES, IFA and Mobile World Congress. Dan has also been a tech expert for many outlets including BBC Radio 4, 5Live and the World Service, The Sun and ITV News.