High Speed Ahead– from CampusTechnology.com

Excerpt re: expanding WiFi coverage :

“WiFi is local; that’s the trouble with it,” said McCartney. “With the 4G network, users will have wireless coverage both indoors and while outside walking around between the buildings. That’s a whole lot of coverage that we didn’t have before.”

Besides the clear advantages of faster, more reliable Internet access, the 4G service helps Purdue’s faculty and staff deliver and use bandwidth-intensive applications and solutions to students in a more seamless fashion. Known for developing proprietary mobile technologies to enhance traditional college classroom experiences, the school’s latest developments include the Facebook academic application Mixable and a student discussion tool, HotSeat, which allows students to interact with their classmates and faculty using Twitter and text messages.

Another new application that was implemented in 2010 finds students making instructional use of video in the institution’s forensics classes, among others. The program and the material produced with it are bandwidth-intensive and difficult to manipulate on a traditional WiFi network. The new 4G access will help fill that gap. “To use this application solution, you have to be able to take video, deliver it and [watch] it,” said McCartney. “You can’t do that on 3G.”

With Purdue’s 4G tower activated since early-December, staff and students are already developing new applications that will have a “measurable and material impact on learning,” said McCartney, who added he expects more colleges to jump on the 4G bandwagon as the successful implementations are documented. “As a leading university, we have to keep up with the plumbing around here, and make sure that all of our services work as expected, and as advertised.”