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Our WiMAX Student Testers have Spoken!


We’ve been extremely busy with multiple projects that are currently occurring with our WiMAX network. One of our projects includes our WiMAX Usability Study. Various students of Ball State University have agreed to participate, in exchange for a free broadband Internet connection! Oh, and we ask that the students complete a few surveys per month. Sounds pretty awesome, right?

Today, I’d like to share with you some results from a recent study conducted among the student testers! This is a preliminary survey, so we covered very basic information. Will the results surprise you? Or are the results something you would have expected? Lets see!

Most recently, we have given away USB WiMAX dongles to students, and asked them to complete the installation process themselves. This process includes self-installing the driver/device software, followed by inserting the USB dongle, and disabling their WiFi connection. From that, we found that (click on chart to view larger):


  •          50.0% of students felt that the installation was easy
  •          36.8% of students found the installation to be moderately difficult
  •          0% found it very difficult
  •          13.2% of students were unsuccessful at installing on their own
    • Reasons why students were unsuccessful were things as simple as they have not gotten a chance to self-install at the time of the survey, to operating-system type issues such as the non-driver support for Windows 7 (all versions) running 32-bit.


Student testers are asked to use WiMAX whenever convenient. In most cases, students already have an Internet connection, whether it be at their own residence, or while on campus. We asked them where they used their connection most (students were allowed to select multiple choices) and found that (click on chart to view larger):

  •          57.4% of students connect off-campus
  •          42.6% connect on-campus


When asking how many hours per week they connected to WiMAX last week, we found the following usage (click on chart to view larger):

  •          16.7% of students never used their WiMAX connection (0 Hours)
  •          13% used their connection between 0 and 1 hours
  •          29.6% used their connection between 1 and 3 hours
  •          9.3% used their connection between 3 and 5 hours
  •          7.4% used their connection between 5 and 7 hours
  •          7.4% used their connection between 7 and 9 hours
  •          16.7% used their connection for more than 9 hours
    •    Of that 16.7%, our ‘power users’ averaged just under 40 hours of connection time per-week


We also wanted to know the approximate time of day they used their WiMAX connection (Students were able to select multiple choices). We found out that (click on chart to view larger):

  •          Students connected between the morning hours of 5AM-9AM 9.3% of the time
  •          Students connected between the daytime hours of 9AM-5PM 44.4% of the time
  •          Students connected between the evening hours of 5PM-11PM 70.4% of the time
  •          Students connected between the late night hours of 11PM-5AM 18.4% of the time

Again, those were just a few preliminary questions that we asked, and plan to ask the same questions again over time, to see if there are any particular trends that form.

What are your thoughts about our findings? Are there any questions you would like answered? Post your comments and questions! We want to know!

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