Spec for faster Wi-Fi at 60GHz published

The Wireless Gigabit Alliance has published a plan to use 60GHz frequencies for faster Wi-Fi links


The news follows an agreement between WiGig and the Wi-Fi Alliance to cooperate on the development of multi-gigabit wireless networking. The two organisations will share technology specifications for a certification program supporting Wi-Fi operation at 60GHz.

“60 GHz device connectivity will be an exciting enhancement to the capabilities of today’s Wi-Fi technologies. It will expand the utility of Wi-Fi, used by hundreds of millions of people every day,” said Edgar Figueroa, chief executive officer of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

The WiGig specification defines protocols to deliver data transfer rates measured in gigabits rather than megabits per second. The specification also defines procedures to enable WiGig-compliant devices to hand over sessions to links running in the 2.4 or 5GHz band.

The WiGig specification will enable high-performance wireless data, display and audio applications to work alongside today’s Wi-Fi systems. WiGig devices will offer data rates of up to 7Gbit/s, more than 10 times faster than the 802.11n WiFi standard. The range of the 60GHz links is expected to be less than that of Wi-Fi links running at lower frequencies.

The technology has been designed to support both high-performance and low-power applications.

Dr Ali Sadri, WiGig Alliance president and chairman, said: “WiGig can now provide the world’s leading innovators with a licence to develop next-generation wireless products under royalty-free terms. With this announcement, and our partnership with the Wi-Fi Alliance, we are one step closer to fulfilling our vision of a unified 60GHz ecosystem.”

The Alliance has opened an adopter program so members can start developing wireless products that use the unlicensed 60GHz spectrum to deliver multi-gigabit-speed wireless communications.

Cisco has joined the WiGig Alliance board, and Harman International, Peraso Technologies and Samsung Electro-Mechanics have joined WiGig as contributing members.

“Cisco sees 60GHz technology as an important option in the evolution of wireless LANs in the enterprise, small business and home,” said Bob Friday, director of strategic initiatives in Cisco’s wireless business unit.

“WiGig shows enormous potential to drive the kind of wireless performance that businesses and consumers need,” said Rob Enderle, president and principal analyst, Enderle Group. “With the publication of its unified specification, WiGig is enabling the next generation of multi-gigabit wireless products for multiple platforms and applications.”

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