The first WiMAX Forum certified products will be available by year’s end, according to the WiMAX Forum, which has launched its certification program by detailing its certification process and timeline. The program was launched during a quarterly members’ meeting last month in Málaga, Spain, the site of the forum’s official Certification test lab, Cetecom. Also during this meeting, the WiMAX Forum announced support from the Korean wireless community to promote WiMAX Forum Certified products, and formalized an agreement with the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) that ensures a single global standard for wireless Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) technology.

“Based on a recent survey of our members regarding their plans to submit products for certification when the lab opens in July, we expect to see multiple vendors offering WiMAX Forum Certified products in the marketplace before the end of the year,” said Ron Resnick, president of the WiMAX Forum. The WiMAX Forum provided details of its certification process and a timeline for testing WiMAX equipment based on the IEEE 802.16-2004 standard. By June, the forum expects to have completed the necessary test cases and test scripts and preparation of test equipment. The lab will open and begin accepting vendor equipment for certification testing in July.

The WiMAX Forum will initially certify equipment based on two profiles: TDD and FDD in the 3.5-GHz frequency band with 3.5-MHz channelization. Based on market demand and vendor product submissions, more profiles will be added in 2006. Although initial WiMAX Forum Certified products will be for fixed products, the momentum for mobility enhancements continues to grow with the increasing involvement of mobile operators and equipment manufacturers in the WiMAX Forum.