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Mobilizing Society

Cellular, Wireless LAN Technologies Should Serve Consumer DemandAlan S. Cohen, senior director of the Wireless Mobility Business group at Cisco, in a perspective piece on CNET, firmly dispels the notion that Cellular and Wireless LAN are competitive technologies. Cellular and Wireless LAN are rather two approaches moving ahead together as allies to keep up with burgeoning and varied customer demand for more and richer services on more devices. Cohen cites the growing appeal of dual-mode (cellular and WLAN) phones. "As devices increasingly become more dual and multimode, including WiMax, choice in wireless networks will support more cost-effective scenarios for users," Cohen writes."When smart devices and users can move from network to network to take advantage of higher performance, lower cost or even different security scenarios, then switching costs drop, and consumers benefit from a world of choice. At the end of the day, consumers do not care what network they connect to but how well their applications perform." It's unwise to be wedded to one particular technology when it's the users who are usually the final arbiters."-Public WLAN services are in a nascent phase, and there are already several constituencies, including municipal governments, happily taking advantage of them," Cohen writes."More mobility and choice seem better than dogmatism. All industry players should be wary of technology religion, lest they, in the closing words of Shakespeare's Othello, "love not wisely, but too well."

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