Wireless standards expanded for improved network traffic

The Wi-Fi Alliance expanded the 802.11ac standard to include features designed to provide a higher-performance connectivity experience with features such as spatial streams and extended support.


The Wi-Fi Alliance expanded the 802.11ac standard to include features designed to provide a higher-performance connectivity experience. Wi-Fi Alliance is also expanding Wi-Fi Certified ac to include features designed to provide a higher-performance mobility experience. The features include:

  • MU-MIMO: Networks with multiple user-multiple input and multiple output (MU-MIMO) are capable of multitasking by sending data to multiple devices at once rather than one-at-a-time, improving overall network efficiency and throughput.
  • 160 MHz channels: Wi-Fi certified ac increases the maximum channel bandwidth from 80 MHz channels to 160 MHz channels, potentially doubling transmission speeds.
  • Four spatial streams: Device speeds are proportional to the number of spatial streams. Wi-Fi certified ac now includes support for four spatial streams, up from three spatial streams.
  • Extended 5 GHz channel support: Wi-Fi certified ac encourages device support for a greater number of available channels in 5 GHz.

The features listed are designed to improve the efficiency of network traffic and thus ensure consumers can access the 1.3 Gbps top speed that the 802.11ac protocol can provide. For example, efficiency is particularly important in situations where the number of devices handled by one Wi-Fi access point increases exponentially.

Wi-Fi Alliance


- Edited by CFE Media. See more Control Engineering wireless stories.

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