Sprint’s cash-strapped status continues to fuel speculation that subsidiary Clearwire is in similar straits.
Clearwire CEO Ben Wolff has noted that credit markets are tight, and that prompted an article from Bloomberg (story here) that the company might not have access to enough funds to keep to its ambitious rollout schedule.
Part of the attraction of WiMAX is that it is deployable today. If Clearwire were to establish a wide footprint, that could help undermine the prospective success of Long Term Evolution (LTE), the high-speed broadband service only now being planned by cellular network operators.
Most of the information so far amounts to the reading of tea leaves. Some look at Nortel’s dropping its WiMAX program and Nokia Siemens ceasing production of a WiMAX handset as signs that WiMAX is not going well in the U.S., though on a worldwide basis, the technology continues to gradually take hold.
Intel, a prominent backer of Clearwire, suggests concerns about the WiMAX purveyor’s financial situation are overblown, however. The Wall Street Journal quoted Intel Chief Sales and Marketing Officer Sean Maloney as saying: “They’ve got enough money to keep going for quite a while. They’ve got a pretty fat piece of capital to go out and build the network.” (Story here; subscription required.)