Wireless & Internet Tech

Wifi Alliance Details 802.11ac Wave 2

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The Wifi Alliance expands the 802.11ac wifi standard with "Wave 2"-- essentially a means to boost current wifi bandwidths while retaining backwards compatibility.

wifi wave 2According to the alliance Wave 2 doubles the bandwidth per channel to double performance should conditions be favourable. It also has four spatial streams, wider 5GHz channel support and MU-MIMO (multi-user, multiple input multiple output) support.

“In today’s world, people have more wifi devices per person and per household, and those devices require significantly more bandwidth,” the alliance says. “Wifi Alliance updated the wifi ac program to meet increasing user demands and to stay ahead of emerging applications, while preserving interoperability.”

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Bluetooth Reaches Version 5

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BluetoothAn email by Bluetooth Special Interest Group director Mark Powell reveals the next version of the Bluetooth wireless standard-- Bluetooth 5, an update promising double the range and speed of Bluetooth 4.2.

Named without a point number in the name of simpler marketing, Bluetooth 5 has the support of major technology companies (including Apple and Intel), and features "significant new functionality for connectionless services" such as location-based information and navigations. Such technology is identical to that used by wireless beacons, as well as the Apple AirDrop and Handoff features.

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Devolo Boosts Wifi With Repeater ac

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Devolo Wifi repeaterCustomers wanting a simple means to extend the range of home wifi can find an ideal solution with the Devolo Wifi Repeater ac, a device the company says provides transfer rates reaching up to 1200Mbit/s.

The repeater uses both 2.4 and 5GHz wireless networking bands to allow for more flexibility in automatic channel selection, as well as faster combined networking speeds. It also includes an integrated LAN port for the wired connection of another device, such as a smart TV, PC, game console, STB or NAS drive.

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Domotz Acquires Fing

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The Domotz home intelligence product and remote tech support offering sets to get further capabilities as the company acquires Fing, the network scanning mobile device app described as one of the most popular in the world.

Domotz appsLaunched back in 2011, the Fing app allows users to quickly scan a network and see all connected devices, evaluate security levels, detect intruders and resolve network issues through a smartphone. The app boasts 12 million downloads and 6 million active users performing over 600000 network scans daily, discovering billions of connected devices every year around the world.

“At Fing, we have always believed in building networking apps that are seamless to use and productive for our users,” the developers say. “We are very excited to continue our work together with Domotz on new products and innovations that are even more relevant and loved by our user base.”

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A Passive Means to Reduce Wifi Energy Use

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University of Washington researchers reveal a means to reduce the power consumption involved with wifi networks-- "Passive Wifi" using virtually no energy even when providing data transfer speeds of up to 11Mbps.

Passive WifiFor the curious Passive Wifi energy consumption reaches up to 49.28 µW when pushing 11Mbps transmissions. Energy use is even lower during 1Mbps transmissions, being around 14.48µW. According to the researchers such a rate is 1000x lower than Bluetooth LE and ZigBee, or 10000x lower than existing wifi chipsets.

To achieve such power reductions Passive Wifi involves a redesign of the power-hungry radios making a router, creating a single device users plug into walls. The plug-in device generates a continuous wifi signal which in turn is reflected by passive devices, creating a chain of low-power transmitters.

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