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What is “Xohm”?


No, it’s not a Superman villain.

Last week in Chicago, Sprint hosted a river boat tour for a group of technology journalists and industry insiders designed to show off its newest project: WiMax wireless technology. The product, dubbed “Xohm: WiMax from Sprint”, showcased the potential of the new wireless technology, which uses high-power antennas to transmit wireless signals over much larger distances than a traditional Wi-Fi system. Guests were encouraged to use the variety of devices on board, from laptops to cell phones, over the wireless network set up by Sprint around Chicago’s downtown area. Ars Technica reporter Eric Bangeman called the WiMax demo “far superior to Verizon’s EV-DO service” and was impressed with the strength of signal and speed of the technology onboard the vessel. He quoted Sprint CTO Barry West as telling the crowd that they were witnessing “the birth of a new technology that’s going to change how human beings communicate.” According to Ars Technica, the Xohm network is slated for a full launch in Chicago, Baltimore and Washington D.C. by March or April 2008. Sprint plans to follow the launch with a nationwide rollout, and should reach all major markets in the U.S. by the end of 2008.

Repeat this over and over:

The Internet is radio’s future.

It will not be an easy future, but it’s a future where you have a big head start – because you have the ears of your audience and your competitors do not.

“Ease of use” is one of the most significant obstacles to any new technology. Consumers hate complications – even those that strike some of us as trivial. But WiMax approaches the ease of radio itself. That will not only be the new way to get your station, it will be the best way.

Because, for the first time ever, your radio station can be defined visually. You can create immersive experiences where audio is one – but not the only – element. You can create interaction and engagement opportunities which are either laborious or awkward today.

You can have three dimensions.

All thanks to the Internet.

Your best friend if you plan now.

Your worst enemy if you don’t.

Tick, tick, tick.

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