After having spent the better part of an evening touring friends and family to get their DSL and cable lines back up running I once more noticed two striking advantages of wireless broadband versus the fixed line competition:
- Installation cost: For wireless broadband you go to the next supermarket (in some countries) and buy a bundled SIM card and USB/PCMCIA HSDPA modem. The software is pretty much self installing and you are up and running in 10 minutes. Compare that to the 10 months waiting time of a friend of mine for a cable connection and the 3 hour installation time with 4 technicians retrofitting the cable infrastructure in the apartment building. Also, compare that to the DSL nightmare in many countries when you want to switch from one DSL provider to another. I know few people who managed to get that done seamlessly and far to many who sat on the dry for weeks and weeks before their DSL link started working again.
- Troubleshooting: If there is a problem on the last mile on your DSL and cable link it’s likely that you are the only one that is impacted. Have fun convincing the customer hotline that it’s not your PC or modem that is acting up. If there is a problem with the base station in a wireless network, however, 1000 people will be impacted, red lights will start flashing in the network operation center and emergency repair operations will kick in within a couple of minutes.
I leave it to you to draw the conclusions.