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In 5 years, Will We Still Be Building the WiFi Infrastructure?

I have been chatting with colleagues about the need for WiFi in the next five years and we seem to be a bit split. So, I decided to "use a life line" and reach out to the audience for help. My thought process is, why will organizations need to build WiFi in five years or more when they can unload this task on the mobile carriers? With the inevitable adoption of 4G or better, why would you continue to build and invest in that infrastructure? I take my argument one step further and say, you can at that time lease some sort of an antenna from mobile carriers and place on your premises for best and optimal signal reception and performance.

But why stop there? Let's let our imaginations run wild. I am sure some will have reservations on security, access to corporate systems, etc. For that matter, I am sure that if it does not exist already, software companies will emerge who would facilitate these tasks. For example, the same way we sign in to WiFi today, we should potentially sign in to our infrastructure. Maybe software could be developed so that if you install that antenna on your premises, the only way to get local resource access to files and applications, etc. would be to enter a PIN of some sort.

My argument is this: We built WiFi for security reasons, of course, but also because we need its mobility and there was and still is no service that would adequately satisfy our needs from a performance and reliability standpoint. However, as mobile carriers enhance their presence and upgrade their infrastructures to 4G or better, the idea of installing an antenna that will be an extension to their infrastructure to meet or exceed our needs and requirements, why not use that? This would free up budget to go do something else and would get us one step further to cloud computing.

Now before I get flamed in the comments section, please consider your reply from a technical and logical perspective, not from a "I like WiFi" and blogs like these that encourage my boss to look at ways to get rid of my "baby" at work. I am interested in your perspectives, why this would be a good/bad idea. Again, I stress and reiterate that I'm talking about this is in 5 years or more. Thoughts?

Posted by Elias Khnaser on 05/05/2011 at 12:49 PM


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