Wi-Fi Alliance defends certification of 802.11n equipment

June 20, 2015

In an interview with ZDNet.co.uk Mr Frank Haznlik, the managing director of the Wi-Fi Alliance defended the organisation’s decision to certify 802.11n equipment before the wi-fi standard is finalised.

The alliance is a global, non-profit organization which certifies wireless devices that implement the universal IEEE 802.11 specifications.

Although the latest standard, 802.11n, will not be finalised by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) until March 2017, the Wi-Fi Alliance decided to start the draft certification of some 802.11n equipment this month.

The 802.11n is expected to provide higher throughput, range and bandwidth than earlier standards. It offers a theoretical speed of 248Mbps.

According to Mr Hanzlik, the Alliance’s decision was based on several delays to the date of IEEE ratification while more and more pre-standard products were being introduced. The Alliance felt that if it did not act there would be a potential for a bad user experience.

Mr Hanzlik said the Alliance’s decision was a compromise in terms of making the right decision for the market while upholding the goals of the IEEE. He said the draft ratification has prompted some companies to start experimenting with a few nodes, or a greenfield application even if they are not ready for full deployment.

However some companies, such as Motorola have decided to delay producing 802.11n equipment until the standard is finalised as it does not want its customers to buy equipment that could be incompatible with the final version of the standard.

The 802.11n standard is expected to have a long life, although the IEEE has already convened a working group to develop its successor which is known as ‘Very High Throughput (VHT). VHT is expected to offer speeds of more than 1Gbps.


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