Wireless technology has come a long way in the last few years, and this is due to the adoption that mobile devices have received and to the increasing demand of consumers for faster and more reliable wireless connections. Today’s wireless standards, although pretty fast, are not even near to multigigabit speeds.
At CES 2013, a presentation by Wilocity showed us the future of Wi-Fi, where these speeds are possible and wireless streaming of big files will be done in the blink of an eye. The new standard will be widely available in the following year, which means that by this time, next year, anyone will be able to transfer files with speeds up to 7 Gbps wirelessly.
Tri-band Wi-Fi presented by Wilocity and Qualcomm
The tri-band technology represents the result from combining the 802.11ac standard with the new 802.11ad standard that uses the 60 GHz spectrum. The resulting chip is based on the Qualcomm VIVE chip, but gives users the possibility to use all of three existing bands for wireless connectivity: 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz and 60 GHz. The chip offers users the very best in the world, having the multigigabit speeds of the 60 GHz band and the long range and wide compatibility of the 2.4 GHz / 5 GHz bands. Although the new standard is yet to be implemented, and at the moment it only works over short distances and its connection is only from one device to another, the developers are very sure that during this year, we will see a wide adoption. In the demo from CES 2013, we’ve seen a file transfer that managed to hit the 1.3 Gbps mark. Although the chip is capable of multigigabit transfers, the hardware and software bottlenecks did not allow it to go faster.
Also, when the device that contained the chip was taken out of the room, the speeds also plummeted to 802.11ac standard speeds. Also, we were shown wireless streaming of HD content from mobile devices to multi-monitor setups and there was no lag or loss of quality. Multi-device connections are not possible at the time, but the chip will be implemented in wireless routers in the following months, allowing consumers to use the new standard as they have used the previous ones. From the press release of Qualcomm and Wilocity we can see that two models are under development, perfect for home networking and mobile device integration:
By integrating a solution that combines whole home, gigabit-class Wi-Fi with in-room, multi-gigabit connectivity into their devices, equipment manufacturers will benefit from the ultra-high speed this newest solution offers. The latest generation tri-band wireless networking card will be available in two options: the QCA9006NFC next-generation form factor (NGFF) and the QCA9006WBD half-mini card (HMC) specification.
The first commercial product that will use the new Wi-Fi chips is the Dell Latitude 6430u Ultrabook, and we hope that other consumer electronics manufacturers will step along this path and start implementing this technology.