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802.11n Wireless Equipment To Be Certified

Posted: 16th May, 2007 By: MarkJ
The Wi-Fi Alliance is to begin certifying next-gen Wi-Fi hardware based off the new 802.11n (draft 2) specification come June next month. Snag is the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has yet to standardise it:

The logo will be placed on all certified products using the technology. 802.11n promises up to five times the throughput and twice the range of the previous fastest standard, 802.11g, and it works in both previous frequencies: 2.4GHz and 5GHz.

The publication date for the finalised standard, which has to be approved by standards body the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), has been repeatedly pushed back. Some observers claim that infighting between vendors is the cause. The Wi-Fi Alliance estimates that 802.11n will only be ratified in March 2009, but it announced last year that it was to start certifying products early because it would not be "in the best interest of the industry" to wait.

"Draft 2.0 is widely considered to provide a stable foundation for commercial products," explained Karen Hanley, senior director at the Wi-Fi Alliance.

Hardware based off the first 802.11n draft has been available in the shops for almost a year and at least some of the manufacturers have promised to offer a 'draft 2' firmware update before the end of Q2-2007.

We're currently waiting to see whether one surfaces for our Linksys router, although it's possible that the final standard could further differ, making future firmware updates unfeasible. More @ ZDNet.
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