Internet Technologies: WiMAX and WiFi
WiMAX is a set of rules controlling the format and transmission of telecommunication signals. WiMAX is short for Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access. It is a technology that delivers mobile Internet or wireless Internet.
WiMAX is suitable for building wireless communication networks in areas where feasibility of using wired network lines is not present. Setting up wired data lines in certain buildings or facilities can be expensive. WiMAX solves this problem because it is inexpensive and more accommodating than wired lines.
The best thing about WiMAX is that it can support even network telephony. This means you even can make Skype calls using WiMAX. If you have a laptop, then you can use a USB modem to connect via WiMAX to the Internet. It is dependent on the availability of a WiMAX tower. Your USB modem will communicate with this WiMAX tower to get you the Internet access.
Wi-Fi on the other hand is short for wireless fidelity, and is a brand manufactured by the Wi-Fi Alliance. It is a conformity framework to ensure that wireless devices communicate seamlessly with each other. If you have a wireless card in your laptop, you can access the Internet through Wi-Fi.
So if you are in a location that provides you Internet access, or in other words allows your wireless card to access its Internet resources, then you are in a Wi-Fi zone. All you need to do is enable the Wi-Fi in your laptop settings. Most hotel lobbies, airports have Wi-Fi.
But Wi-Fi is limited in range and distance when compared to WiMAX. It can provide coverage only up to a few feet or yards from the hotspot, unlike WiMAX, which can provide coverage up to 35 miles.
People tend to think that WiMAX is a bettered version of Wi-Fi. Similarities do exist in the technology, but there are differences in the way the technology is rendered, along with its uses.
WiMAX is relatively a new technology. WiMAX equipment has started to come after the year 2005-2006. WiMAX will slowly phase-out digital subscriber line (DSL) technology. DSL uses local telephone wires for data transmission. With the entry of WiMAX, data transmission needs over longer distances can be easily addressed.