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Future Of Wireless (as of some years ago)


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This is mainly for historical interest, to see how the world that appears to be coming, differs from what we have.

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Future Of Wireless (as of some years ago)

  1. 1. The Future of Wireless Kyle Cordes Oasis Digital Solutions Inc. “ Like the present, but hopefully with fewer wires”
  2. 3. Kyle in 30 Seconds <ul><li>Kyle Cordes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Project manager, consultant, more </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>St. Louis Wireless SIG </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Oasis Digital Solutions Inc. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Software development firm in St. Louis area </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Has developed various mobile / wireless applications </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Exposed to many technologies and vendors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>In the trenches </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assisted customers with broad deployment </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 4. Agenda <ul><li>How Far is the Future? </li></ul><ul><li>Upcoming Technologies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Survey quickly, lots of acronyms and buzzwords to ignore </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Trends </li></ul><ul><li>Business Impact </li></ul>
  4. 5. The Future is a Long Time <ul><li>The next 2-5 years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relative easy to predict the overall direction, since things that become popular in that time span are in development now. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>5+ years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Generally know what technology is likely, but it remains to be seen which will become popular. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>50 years </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“Star Trek” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Except hopefully our wireless will work even in bad weather… </li></ul></ul>
  5. 6. 2.5G <ul><li>Name for medium-speed wide area wireless </li></ul><ul><li>Nextel offers 14-20Kbps </li></ul><ul><li>GSM GPRS offers 20-40Kbps </li></ul><ul><ul><li>GSM is dominant in Europe and growing here: AT&T, T-Mobile, others </li></ul></ul>
  6. 7. 3G <ul><li>Name for higher-speed wire area wireless </li></ul><ul><ul><li>~128 Kbps while driving </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>~384 Kbps while walking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>~2000 Kbps while stationary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Faster speeds may get branded “4G” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Most cell phone carriers intend to move to 3G… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… eventually </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Nextel is testing their flavor in North Carolina </li></ul></ul>
  7. 8. CMDA <ul><li>Another wireless technology family </li></ul><ul><li>Has its own naming for faster future speeds </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1xRTT etc. </li></ul></ul>
  8. 9. 802.11 N <ul><li>Next step in WiFi (local area wireless) </li></ul><ul><li>100 – 250 Mbps </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Twice the current common rate </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Hard to get excited about – 802.11G is already quite fast </li></ul>
  9. 10. WiMAX <ul><li>IEEE 802.16a, 10-66 GHz </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Builds on 802.11a </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Long-range wireless broadband </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Compete with cable modem and DSL </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Like cable / DSL, could offer voice service </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Connect buildings miles apart </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Potentially cover a metro area with service </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Some companies already offer wide area broadband with WiFi and special antennas </li></ul>
  10. 11. More WiMAX <ul><li>IEEE 802.16e </li></ul><ul><li>For Mobile applications </li></ul><ul><li>Are you dizzy from the acronyms yet? </li></ul>
  11. 12. Atheros Super-G <ul><li>A proprietary variation on WiFi </li></ul><ul><li>Combined two WiFi channels to double speed </li></ul><ul><li>Potentially interferes with others in the area </li></ul><ul><ul><li>So it might not make your neighbors happy </li></ul></ul>
  12. 13. Quality of Service and VoIP <ul><li>IEEE 802.11q – specification for QoS </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Coming soon to WiFi. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Quality of Service “reserves” part of the network capacity for a particular purpose </li></ul><ul><li>Vital for high-quality phone calls or video over wireless. </li></ul>
  13. 14. Bluetooth <ul><li>Personal area networking – a few meters of range </li></ul><ul><li>Wireless headset, microphones </li></ul><ul><li>Data sync for PDAs, cell phones, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Imminently popular for several year, is now finally main-stream. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Built in to some cars! </li></ul></ul>
  14. 15. UWB – Ultra Wide Band <ul><li>Uses a very wide section of radio spectrum at very low power </li></ul><ul><li>Extremely high bandwidth, 0.5 – 1 Gbps (!) </li></ul><ul><li>Some players suggest very short distances (5-30 feet) </li></ul><ul><li>Others suggest a few hundred feet, making it a much faster WiFi </li></ul><ul><li>Products coming which offer “wireless USB / FireWire” </li></ul>
  15. 16. Security <ul><li>WiFi started with poor security: WEP </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Readily broken by “hackers” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Next step: WPA </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fixes WEP problems, but… </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Being replaced by WPA2 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A refinement on WPA </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The future: 802.11i (~WPA2) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Should be good enough for many years </li></ul></ul>
  16. 17. Security – The Short Version <ul><li>In the next few years, wireless systems will have good security “out of the box” </li></ul><ul><li>For robust security now, consider: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Isolating your wireless network </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Using a VPN to let users in to your main network </li></ul></ul>
  17. 18. RFID <ul><li>Radio Frequency ID “tags” </li></ul><ul><li>Wireless equivalent of a bar-code </li></ul><ul><li>Expected to become much more popular over the next few years as unit prices fall </li></ul><ul><li>Saves labor – much easier to read many RFIDs than to scan many bar codes </li></ul><ul><li>But – the “shopping cart problem” is still not fully solved. </li></ul>
  18. 19. GPS <ul><li>Global Positioning System </li></ul><ul><li>Satellite constellation provided by US Government </li></ul><ul><ul><li>One-way, broadcasts data, nothing to “subscribe” to </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Provides location information within feet </li></ul><ul><li>Receiver hardware is now small and cheap </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Increasingly integrated with other devices </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Next-generation GPS is in development </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More accurate, better indoor performance </li></ul></ul>
  19. 20. Biggest Trend – Adoption <ul><li>Nearly everyone has a cell phone, and adoption keeps increasing. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Some Europe countries well ahead on this, because higher cost of wireline services makes wireless more appealing. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Most cell phones will have wireless data capability </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Because the incremental cost is near zero, and carriers can sell incremental data services </li></ul></ul><ul><li>More and more PCs will ship with wireless included </li></ul><ul><li>Many other devices will ship with wireless included </li></ul>
  20. 21. Next trend - Interference <ul><li>Many wireless technologies operate on unlicensed bands </li></ul><ul><li>Many others operate on very busy bands </li></ul><ul><li>Results: interference between systems is likely to grow </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It’s already an issue in companies with both cordless phones and WiFi networking </li></ul></ul>
  21. 22. Trend - The Wireless Home <ul><li>WiFi range and speed are already good enough </li></ul><ul><li>Price heading towards zero (!) </li></ul><ul><li>Expect built in WiFi for nearly all PCs, and increasingly in other peripherals </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Printers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Network Attached Storage” hard drives </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Apple Macintoshes already auto-configure a (wireless) network </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Microsoft is working on a different, incompatible approach. </li></ul></ul>
  22. 23. Trend – The Wireless Home <ul><li>Many Non-PC devices contain, or will contain, an embedded computer </li></ul><ul><li>Many such devices can easily benefit from wireless </li></ul><ul><li>Example: TiVo </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Expect network multiple devices to “notice” each other then work together, via wireless. </li></ul></ul>
  23. 24. Trend - Wireless Business LANs <ul><li>Running wire is expensive </li></ul><ul><li>Maintaining wire is expensive </li></ul><ul><li>Re-running wire is expensive </li></ul><ul><li>Waiting for wiring is expensive </li></ul><ul><li>Wireless: Speed up, Cost down, Security OK </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Result: Forget wiring for many business PC users. </li></ul></ul>
  24. 25. Trend - Wireless LAN Everywhere <ul><li>WiFi will become much more pervasive </li></ul><ul><li>Already common at coffee shops, cafes, bookstores, convention centers, etc. </li></ul>
  25. 26. Trend - Free Wifi <ul><li>Currently, some hotspots free, others expensive </li></ul><ul><li>McDonalds is planning $2.95 for 2 hours </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They are likely to sell a whole lot of $2.95’s </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>I don’t think the $10 per day vendors will last. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It is easy and cheap to offer free WiFi, but expensive and complex to charge for it. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Expect it to become a common giveaway at retail businesses which benefit from lingering customers </li></ul></ul>
  26. 27. Trend - Converging devices <ul><li>Phone + PDA + MP3 + pager + blackberry + camera </li></ul><ul><li>Phones are gaining PDA features </li></ul><ul><li>Phones are getting cameras </li></ul><ul><li>Phone as “gateway” via Bluetooth </li></ul><ul><li>Why are phones the driver? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>163 million cell phones active in the U.S. alone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Far more units than any other device </li></ul></ul>
  27. 28. Counter-Trend to Convergence <ul><li>Single purpose, small, cheap devices are also appealing to buyers </li></ul><ul><li>The “parts cost” of adding wireless to a device, will continue to fall, so that “sharing” the wireless from one device to another will be harder to justify. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Even though this sharing will be easy to set up </li></ul></ul>
  28. 29. Trend – Multi-network Phones <ul><li>Coming soon: Phones that work on both cellular and WiFi networks </li></ul><ul><li>Carry one phone, use it at home/work/car </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only pay for minutes when you’re away from home/office </li></ul></ul>
  29. 30. Trend – Disposable Devices <ul><li>Disposable phones </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Some are literally disposable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Others are so cheap that we can think of them as disposable. </li></ul></ul>
  30. 31. Business Impact <ul><li>In the business of wireless: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Service Delivery (i.e. selling wireless services) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Product Sales (i.e. selling wireless stuff) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>For companies that use wireless: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cost Reduction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Agility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Speed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased efficiency </li></ul></ul>
  31. 32. Offering Services via Wireless <ul><li>Horizontal consumer services </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Expect these to be offered mostly by cell carriers, who are in a position to capture that revenue </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Vertical business services </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Lots of opportunity for third parties to build on the wireless infrastructure </li></ul></ul>
  32. 33. Cost Savings in the Office / Campus <ul><li>Save the cost of installing, maintaining, and changing a wired network </li></ul><ul><li>More radical: dispersed workgroups, who perhaps dispense with the office completely </li></ul>
  33. 34. Cost Savings for Field Operations <ul><li>Reduce travel of field workers to the office, using wide area wireless </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Email, workflow, etc. via cell phone, PDA, PC </li></ul></ul>
  34. 35. Agility, Speed and Efficiency <ul><li>Real time data, from the field </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Appealing, even addicting, to management </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The “Zero-Latency Enterprise” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Good buzzword, also a valuable idea </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Helps manage risk </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Greater value to your customers </li></ul>
  35. 36. Application Categories <ul><li>Mobile / Wireless – specific application: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>CRM / Sales Force Automation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Workflow </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile workforce management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Route planning </li></ul></ul><ul><li>More Generally: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>As networks get better, anything you can do in the office, you could do anywhere </li></ul></ul>
  36. 37. Example: Mobile Workforce Management <ul><li>Typical mobile workforce management system can include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sending work orders to field workers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Getting status and completion information </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Getting GPS location information (how long did they spend where?) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rescheduling and load balancing </li></ul></ul><ul><li>One problem: you can do all this now, and this talk is supposed to be about the future… </li></ul>
  37. 38. Future Mobile Workforce Management <ul><li>Now: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Small-volume, high-value-per-byte data, such as work orders, schedules, location, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Future: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Bulk data to and from field workers: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Documentation on-demand to the worker </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Photos, Videos on-demand to the worker </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Photos, Videos from the field worker </li></ul></ul></ul>
  38. 39. What Does This Cost? <ul><li>Not very expensive per worker, but it adds up </li></ul><ul><li>Hypothetic Example: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>2500 field personnel </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>$50 per month each for wireless voice+data service </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The speed and features keep going up, but the monthly bill doesn’t come down. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>$ 1.5 million per year </li></ul></ul>
  39. 40. Sample Cost Scenario <ul><li>Wireless data costs often largest TCO line item </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Compared to hardware, software, back office, support costs </li></ul></ul>
  40. 41. The End <ul><li>Q & A ? </li></ul><ul><li>Thanks for coming </li></ul><ul><li>Contact Information: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kyle Cordes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Oasis Digital Solutions Inc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>(636) 219-9589 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>