Broadband services on rail tracks; the business case for fast roaming WLAN

HBJ ter Harmsel, NHG Baken

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleProfessional


Wireless broadband in trains is a today's topic of interest for many technology vendors and entrepreneurs. Railway travelers are very enthusiastic about these services. However, it is not so obvious to make the business case go and fly. There are several reasons for this, the first one is obvious: where do the reveneous come from? Do railsway travelers want to pay for these services and how many users are expected on a daily basis? The second reasson concerns technolgoy. Broadband technology such as WiMAX is not yet mature. In this paper, a strategy is proposed for introducing wireless broadband, i.e. internet broadband access in trains, taking into account both the Commercial Portfolio (CPF) and teh Technical Portfolio (TPF). Considering the CPF, there exist several opportunities to create value-added services to end-users and business support processes. Broadband applications in trains can be seen as an extra services making public transport more attractive. In this paper we will demonstrate an independent test and its performance from which new results are presented. The test set-up deals with both layer-2 and -3 handover from different vendors, in which the focus is specifically on the performance of centralized versus decentralized intelligence in combination with 802.11i security mechanisms. Furthermore, a business case scenario is presented, based on a net-present value calculation. We conclude that ther are definitely business opportunities for broadband applications in trains!
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)10-18
Number of pages9
JournalTijdschrift van het NERG
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2007


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