There is speculation fueled by a Wall Street Journal article (subscription required) that Sprint and Clearwire have resumed negotiations to jointly build a nationwide WiMAX network. Of course the issue with this is money. It costs a heck of a lot of it to bring a new technology like WiMAX to market. Clearwire is not big enough to do it alone, and Sprint investors don’t have the stomach for it, considering the debacle caused by the Sprint-Nextel merger.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Intel, Google, and Best Buy have joined the discussions as possible investors. Makes logical sense for all of them – they all stand to gain should a WiMAX a nationwide network prosper. It is a risky proposition considering the other 4G alternatives that are out there, namely LTE, which both Verizon and AT&T have hitched their wagon to. WiMAX has at least one advantage if all of these identified players get there act together and get moving. WiMAX could conceivably get a head start on LTE, and Sprint might be able to get some of their “mojo” back. They’ll need it to compete over the long term with Verizon, AT&T, and even T-Mobile. Right now, they’re looking like a wounded fish in a tank full of sharks.