Clearwire Launches WiMax In 10 More Markets

Clearwire officially launched its WiMax wireless broadband service to 10 more markets, bringing its service footprint to 14 markets covering approximately 10 million people, and detailed its plans to apply for government broadband stimulus funds.

As previously announced, as of Sept. 1, Clearwire's 4G WiMax service is available in Bellingham, Wash.; Boise, Idaho; and eight cities in Texas: Abilene, Amarillo, Corpus Christi, Killeen/Temple, Lubbock, Midland/Odessa, Waco and Wichita Falls.

In addition, Clearwire announced Tuesday that it applied for a "modest amount" of broadband stimulus funds to bring new service to underserved areas within Detroit and Puerto Rico, two areas that were not otherwise part of Clearwire's current business plan. Clearwire said it also plans to affiliate with a limited number of other grants submitted, as a spectrum and technology partner, covering additional territories in five states.

Clearwire said the stimulus-related projects would have no significant impact on its funding or buildout plans, but "demonstrate the company's support of the government's stimulus initiatives."

The company is majority owned by Sprint Nextel, which holds a 51% stake, along with Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Google and Intel.

Other markets Clearwire has scheduled for launch in 2009 include Chicago; Charlotte, N.C.; Dallas/Ft. Worth; Honolulu; Philadelphia and Seattle. By the end of 2010, Clearwire plans to bring the WiMax service to 80 markets covering up to 120 million people, in markets to include New York, Boston, Washington, D.C., Houston and the San Francisco Bay Area.

The Clearwire service is advertised as providing average download speeds of 3 to 6 Mbps with bursts over 10 Mbps.