Too Soon? Gigabit WiFi Rumors

Keep in mind that the IEEE 802.11n wireless spec hasn’t even been solidified and is still in the draft phase. Draft, people. And now, rumors of Gigabit WiFi are popping up at a time where WiMAX is still having a ton of problems and we’re still on 802.11g as a standard. The new technology, dubbed 802.11 VHT (Very High Throughput), could one day be the new standard for WiFi. The performance increase would be astonishing, but right now, no computer could take advantage of it:

f approved, the increase in data rates would be dramatic, at least by today’s standards. The 802.11n standard calls for bandwidth on the order of 600 Mbits/s; today, so-called “pre-n” devices offer roughly 300 Mbits/s. But actual throughput can be much less, or only about 100 Mbits/s, after overhead and other traffic. The 802.11 VHT proposals call for throughput of at least a gigabit per second, which could place actual data rates many times higher. Interestingly, none of the PAR documents mention the estimated range for the wireless link.

As you can see, that’s nearly twice the speed of 802.11n. Maybe adding VHT into the mix isn’t such a bad idea after all…


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