For those basketball fans in the audience, March is best known as March Madness and the NCAA tournament. But, for the WiMAX sector, the last few days should be called Merger Madness.
Colubris and Airspan, both WiMAX developers, announced merger agreements this week. In both cases, each positioned themselves to be more than sheer WiMAX equipment providers. In the case of Colubris, the company can now make a play at the enterprise and carrier-class Wi-Fi market. In the case of Airspan, the company added VoIP networking equipment that can be used to deliver voice services over WiMAX links.
My guess is that the Colubris and Airspan announcements are indicators that more mergers are on the way in the WiMAX sector. While WiMAX is a hot technology button, questions are already starting to emerge about business models and competition from other technologies. To me, that means uncertainty, and uncertainty in a market often leads to more acquisitions.
In addition to market questions, there's no doubt that carriers will soon start wondering what services they can offer on a WiMAX connection. Clearly, VoIP is one service everyone discusses. That means there needs to be tighter collaboration between WiMAX and VoIP equipment providers, thus opening the door for additional mergers.
So keep an eye out over the next few months. My bet says that a lot more WiMAX consolidation is on the way.
Editor's Note: Let us know your thoughts on consolidation in the WiMAX sector? Are the Colubris and Airspan announcements signs for the sector? Let us know in our WiMAX Forum.