I decided to do some reading on the term "carrier-grade" and have found the following to be what is considered a definition in relation to our industry. One random source on the web refers to this as, "A term that implies a system that is designed to have increased availability and timeliness to meet the requirements of a modern communications network element." I saw this quantified on one site as being, a network device which has a sustained uptime of over 99.999%. This was as close to a quantifiable definition as I have found though it gives no length of time or other parameters to use for calculation of this percentage. According to Hughes Software Systems in regard to "Carrier-grade" they state that equipment can only be considered "Carrier-grade" after several years of real field use shows that it is highly available and reliable. In the end it is a very subjective term and one I will not use in the future unless I can quantify the classification. Basically there is no firm definition but I have heard of Alvarion referred to as "Carrier-grade" by others and mistakingly assumed it was a clearly defined characteristic. My apologies for this error in wording.

With that said I still think Alvarion is a far better platform than Canopy which is strictly my opinion and has no basis in fact. In the past I have been put-off by a perceived arrogance I have seen by some Alvarion representatives who have insisted previously that they had the "only" viable solution for wireless broadband and seemed as though they were claiming almost a "holier than thou" behavior toward anyone stating another opinion than their own. I have also seen a terribly biased negative attitude toward Alvarion by many WISPs who wanted to drive home the "WISP=Cheap" mentality to the point of alienating Alvarion from our entire market segment. Both Alvarion and most WISPs have lost a great ally in each other and I suspect both sides have suffered from such negativity. I am hoping to see this division closed between the typical WISP operator and Alvarion.

Regarding Waverider, I do not sell above a 768k connection to customers on Waverider. Many buy 256k as their connection speed. Waverider is currently the least common point of problems in our wireless network. My love of Waverider comes from the lack of customer complaints. I do not see any speed issues relating to customers not getting what they expect, even in heavily utilized sectors. I really should do some testing on-site during peak periods though so I can see first hand what my customers do who use Waverider for their service. I only see calls regarding speed when we have some heavy peer to peer use or other factors unrelated to Waverider itself.

Dylan Oliver wrote:

How is any product qualified as 'Carrier-Grade'? What is it about Alvarion VL that makes the cut vs. Canopy? Lord knows Motorola produces far more 'Carrier-Grade' equipment than Alvarion ever will - so where did they go wrong with Canopy?

Also, I've heard lately several complaints that Waverider has trouble sustaining even 1 Mbps throughput ... what is your experience, John?

Dylan Oliver
Primaverity, LLC

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