Those with Compaq’s iPAQ Pocket PCs can get a taste of the latest sports
series sensation and the future of wireless broadband networking courtesy of
The Los Angeles-based rich media solution provider has teamed with Compaq,
ICEwrx and Macromedia to deliver coverage of the NBA showdown between the
Los Angeles Lakers and the Philadelphia 76ers. The deal, good until the
winner takes all, is part of a pilot program at the Staples Center where the
Lakers host their home games. Compaq will provide the iPAQ’s to a
select group of people for this demo. Coverage includes game offerings in real-time
and highlight clips.
Icewrx was charged with installing the wireless broadband network, based on
the popular 802.11b standard, inside STAPLES Center to provide wireless
capability for the iPAQs. Essentially, the whole scenario is a foreshadowing
of technology that Luxxon President Roger Brooks said won’t be widely
available until a few years down the road.
Brooks told InternetNews.com that while the demonstrations will only work for those using iPAQs within the facility, that the wireless networking range will expand greatly over the next few years as the technology continues to evolve. Basically, the experiment provides Luxxon with the opportunity to demonstrate next
generation applications over bandwidth that is not readily available from today’s wireless networks, but that will be available in the near future.
For its part, Macromedia will lend its Flash technology to provide a clear graphical user interface (GUI) for users who lie on the non-technical side of the tracks. Fans can quickly find the information they want about the game, whether getting quick player statistics or finding their seats on interactive charts.
And for the duration of the NBA Finals, Luxxon will utilize its Mediator
streaming media system, which enables wireless operators to provide audio
and video streaming applications in multiple formats. This minimizes the
operator’s risk by not having to base their services strategy on one format.
“The trial at STAPLES Center enables us to show a live demonstration of the
type of compelling applications that can be delivered to wireless users over
location-based wireless networks as well as 2.5 and 3G networks,” said Dave
Singhal, chief executive officer at Luxxon, in a public statement. “Luxxon’s
products provide the wireless infrastructure needed to power the type of
compelling applications that can be delivered over next generation
high-speed wireless networks.”
“Luxxon’s transcoding technology provides the ability to adapt the bit rate,
frame rate, resolution and format of the content in real time to ensure that
the stream is perfectly tailored for the various wireless devices on the
market as well as the various networks,” Singhal added.
Though improved wireless technologies may not be ubiquitous for a few years
as Brooks suggested, few people dispute that mobility-focused applications
and the devices that run them are snowballing in popularity. According to
Dataquest Inc., a unit of Gartner Inc., there will be 137 million wireless
data users in North America by 2005. Granted, most of these users will use
mobile applications within their particular fields of work as opposed to
using the devices for entertainment such as sports, but wireless device and
application use is enjoying proliferation nonetheless.
This growth will be driven by the rollout of packet data networks on a
nationwide basis, increased overall usage of wireless devices to receive
messages and e-mail, inexpensive wireless data devices, and company specific
applications, which improve the productivity of the mobile worker, the
Yankee Group said.