The IEEE Standards Association has recently approved a new wireless Internet technology known as WiGig (that’s 802.11ad to you technophiles out there).
What makes this such big news is the blazing fast speeds at which WiGig wireless routers and other networking equipment will be able to transfer data over a Wi-Fi connection. The newly approved WiGig standard is theoretically capable of wirelessly transferring data at the mind-boggling rate of 7 Gbps, a speed that will make the Wireless N speeds that we currently use seem like a snail’s pace.
To put this 7 Gbps speed into perspective, a typical wired LAN connection operates at 100 Mbs. The newer “Gigabit” wired Ethernet connections that higher end routers now support are capable of operating at 10 times that speed, but they require a wired connection in order to operate. Now consider that WiGig promises to transfer data at 7 times the awesome speed of Gigabit Ethernet, and without the need to connect a cable!
WiGig routers will come with one limitation however. The Wi-Fi signal will only be usable within 40 feet or less of the router, meaning you might not be able to connect if your computer is in a distant room of a large house. There is also an upside though: the higher 60 Ghz frequency at which WiGig operates travels through walls much better than current Wi-Fi signals, which means you’ll likely enjoy a strong signal most anywhere within that 40 foot radius.
WiGig routers and corresponding wireless adaptors are expected to start showing up on store shelves some time during the second half of 2013. If you can hold off on replacing your aging router until then you’ll probably be very richly rewarded.
Although actual Wi-Fi speeds never reach the maximum allowed by the specs of the standard used, with a WiGig wireless router and network adaptor for your computer, the speed of your PC’s connection to the Internet will effectively be limited solely by the speed provided by your Internet Service Provider.