If the number of patent applications has any relevance to a technology's long-term success then WiMAX seems to be definitely on the upswing.
A report from West Technology Research Solutions (WTRS), a market research and consulting company specializing in Insteon, ZigBee, UWB, Bluetooth, WiMAX, IEEE 802.15.4, Wi-Fi, finds that the number of WiMAX-related patents soared from 50 in 2005 to 475 in 2006.
There is, of course, a downside. In this case, there are undoubtedly conflicting patent applications and the litigation (or more accurately pre-litigation) among the conflicted parties as each tries to stare down the other, may impede the technology's roll out.
WTRS Principal Analyst Kirsten West predicted that the triple play industry "will be dominated by WiMax in both fixed and mobile forms," and that "we are starting to see examples of WiMax used to solve actual business pain and that is the prerequisite for broad adoption in the Wireless Triple Play market."
Patents are tracked for mobile and fixed WiMAX and related technologies such as WiBRO. Both U.S. and worldwide patents are evaluated by company with a focus on fundamental network architecture, enabling software, and RF chipsets.
Detail is extensive and the 500 page Report is both comprehensive and accessible, organized with an easy-to-use interface; patents to claims are hyperlinked within the document.
More information is available at www.wtrs.net.