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Wireless Communications Sector Will Benefit from $6.8 Billion Stimulus Bill Funding

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The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA, also known simply as the Stimulus Bill) will provide funding for a massive $6.8 billion worth of wireless communications upgrades and new deployments over 2009 2010. The Act offers a significant one off opportunity for wireless equipment vendors, an opportunity that is examined in depth by a new study from ABI Research.

“The ARRA represents a windfall for wireless service providers as well as for satellite service providers,” comments vice president Stan Schatt. “It will have an enormous impact on Wi-Fi and wireless broadband vendors. It will also immediately benefit a number of specific vertical industries including healthcare, education, homeland security, the environment, and the nation’s electricity infrastructure.”

In healthcare, the scope for adding wireless to the technology mix encompasses Wi-Fi-enabled mobile devices and sensors, communications systems linking health networks, telepresence, wireless LAN equipment, and Wi-Fi-enabled video surveillance systems.

In education, already a leading adopter of Wi-Fi solutions, equipment vendors are developing templated solutions in such areas as WLANs for “learning anywhere,” voice-over-Wi-Fi, and WLAN equipment and software to track students’ progress for “No Child Left Behind” record keeping.

The Department of Homeland Security and US Customs and Border Protection are potential goldmines for wireless vendors because of the many agencies within them that will use ARRA funds for tactical communications equipment, infrastructure equipment, and security equipment. Even critical infrastructure construction projects such as bridges and tunnels often require wireless video surveillance systems.

In fact, notes Schatt, “Many of the spending opportunities lie ‘under the surface’. A civil engineering project which seems mainly about concrete and steel may actually benefit from a lot of wireless technology. And because vendors can’t apply for funds themselves, they are – and should be – doing everything in their power to help their customers do so.”

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Tags: satellite  wireless broadband  wlan  security  health  wireless lan