What is wimax?
WiMAX is a wireless digital communications system, also known as IEEE 802.16, that is intended for wireless "metropolitan area networks". WiMAX can provide broadband wireless access (BWA) up to 30 miles (50 km) for fixed stations, and 3 - 10 miles (5 - 15 km) for mobile stations. In contrast, the WiFi/802.11 wireless local area network standard is limited in most cases to only 100 - 300 feet (30 - 100m).
With WiMAX, WiFi-like data rates are easily supported, but the issue of interference is lessened. WiMAX operates on both licensed and non-licensed frequencies, providing a regulated environment and viable economic model for wireless carriers.
why is it useful?
WiMAX is designed as a wireless alternative to DSL and cable for last mile broadband access and as way to interconnect Wi-Fi hotspots into a Metropolitan Area Network. Although, the actual uses for WiMAX overlaps those for Wireless Local Area Network up until the mobile Wide Area Network level. Telephone and cable companies are closely probing the potential of WiMAX as a "last mile" connectivity option. This will result to a better-priced service for both home and business customers and not to mention the elimination of the "captive" customer bases for both telephone and cable networks.