Want more speed for your wireless devices? Today the Wireless Gigabit Alliance announced a new 60 GHz technology that will provide speeds of up to 7 Gbps between wireless devices. With the new standard, wirelessly streaming high definition video will be a breeze. Current Wi-Fi standards only reach a maximum of 600 Mbps using 802.11n, and real world speeds aren’t even close to that. The WiGig Alliance has also announced new partnerships and launched an adopter program where they are offering royalty-free licenses for any products using the standard.
The downside of the new wireless specification is that it operates on the 60 GHz band, which means different power requirements than Wi-Fi, effectively reducing the range it is able to cover. To solve this problem the WiGig Alliance has partnered with the Wi-Fi Alliance, bundling the two technologies together so there is compatibility between the two. This means WiGig will be used for devices within a short range, and Wi-Fi will continued to be used for longer range. A typical implementation might be used to replace HDMI cables, making it much easier to setup home theater components and drastically reduce the amount of cables to manage. It could also be used to provide high speed access to external hard drives, making a great match for portable devices with limited storage capacity.
Additional partners include NVIDIA and AMD. Apple is also rumored to be working on using the new WiGig technology. Nobody knows what products Apple is working on that would use it, but it shows the level of interest the new technology is getting. The standard is still new so it will be a couple years before we start to see products using it. I hope they can roll it out fast though, other competing technologies such as WHDI have so far seen abysmal adoption in the market place. We can only hope the Wi-Fi partnership will propel it forward into real products.