To save you your click through energy. A group that no one has ever heard of before suddenly obtained WiMax licenses for all of Russia. According to the second article (cunningly disguised as a link in WiMax) first had the money to invest and then maybe did not.
A non-serious question first:
What is it about telecoms that attracts fraudsters and the gullible?
What is WiMax?
And why are you interested?
More importantly and seriously:
Licensing - It's actually not that difficult to get your hands on licenses, and pan-Russia licenses are no more or less difficult than Region-specific ones. It's the terms that are killers. Pan-Russia licenses have deployment terms that are generally pretty impossible to match unless you have the cash lined up subject to licensing. Which, to-date in Russia, only happens if you happen to be creating the third mobile license from nowhere and Leonid Dodonovich is MinSvyaz. i.e. it's clear which is the chicken and which is the egg. Failure to meet license conditions in any one region negates the others. In short Russia's licensing regime is liberal provided you execute and draconian if you don't - or I don't like your tie.
Why use WiMax: Some would disagree with me, not least of all the very smart Elena at Baring Vostok who invested in Enforta earlier this year, but I am not a believer in WiMax as a solution for Russia's urban environments and here's why:
They are very densely populated (Tokyo-dense) which calls for scalable bandwidth (please don't quote theoretical throughputs)
Internet is the prime-driver but ARPU's are headed for $14 and double-play (Internet, visual data) will be needed
There is a much higher ratio (i.e. closer to 1:1) of outgoing/incoming traffic from early adopters (gamers) who much prefer being able to play Intranet than Internet
The past is not a predicator of the future.
I am not in favor of the investment theory that says we will acquire the customer with a cheap solution and upgrade the network as required - there is too much competition.
So I will join the ranks of the sceptical and back my hunch that bandwidth is the winner.