Gigabit WiFi Draws Attention

Work on the IEEE 802.11ac one Gbps WiFi standard received a lot of attention in the press this week. The standard is part of work on Very High Throughput or "VHT" wireless connectivity. The 802.11ac standard will use frequencies below 6 GHz, but excludes the 2.4 GHz band. Most devices will likely use the 5 GHz WiFi bands.

The Status of Project IEEE 802.11ac – Very High Throughput < 6 GHz Web page notes the first TG draft was approved last month and an internal review period will run from Jan. 28 to Feb. 27, 2011.

An article by Paul Korzeniowski Ready for 1Gbps WiFi notes that In-Stat projects that compliant products will begin shipping in 2012 and will be found in more than one billion devices by 2015. He noted, however, that vendors have not yet agreed on a way to increase the speed.

Existing WiFi speeds are more than adequate for distributing a DSL or cable Internet connection around the house, but viewing local HD video content or reading and writing to network storage will benefit from the higher speeds available in 802.11ac.

Doug Lung

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.