Mobile ad-hoc networks became a popular subject for research as laptops and 802.11/Wi-Fi wireless networking became widespread in the mid to late 1990s. Many of the academic papers evaluate protocols and abilities assuming varying degrees of mobility within a bounded space, usually with all nodes within a few hops of each other, and usually with nodes sending data at a constant rate. Different protocols are then evaluated based on the packet drop rate, the overhead introduced by the routing protocol, and other measures.
The Children's Machine One Laptop per Child program has developed a cheap laptop for mass distribution (>1 million at a time) to developing countries for education. The laptops will use IEEE 802.11s based ad hoc wireless mesh networking to develop their own communications network out of the box.
Vehicular Ad Hoc Networks (VANET) are a form of MANETs used for communication among vehicles and between vehicles and roadside equipment.
Intelligent vehicular ad hoc network (InVANET) is a kind of Intelligence in Vehicle(s) which provide multiple autonomic intelligent solutions to make automotive vehicles to behave in intelligent manner during vehicle-to-vehicle collisions, accidents, drunken driving etc. InVANET uses WiFi IEEE 802.11 b/802.11g/802.11p and WiMAX IEEE 802.16 for providing easy, accurate, effective communication between multiple vehicles on dynamic mobility. Effective measures to track the automotive vehicles, media download /upload, conference between vehicles are also preferred. InVANET can also be applied for artillery vehicles during warfare, battlefield, and peace-time operations. Mesh networking in mobile applications have been demonstrated in multiple military scenarios.
In September 2007, the Swedish company TerraNet AB presented a mesh network of mobile phones allowing for the routing of calls and data between participating hand sets, without the need to involve cell sites [Source].