802.11n spent years tied up in draft status with the IEEE, and as a result it feels like it’s been around forever. By comparison it feels like 802.11ac, the standard being released to replace it, is moving at an amazing pace. In fact, Netgear is preparing to claim bragging rights on being the first 802.11ac compatible commercial router available for sale. Announced on Thursday, the R6300 will start shipping in May, and is capable of speeds up to 1.3Gbps on the 5 GHz band, assuming of course you have a compatible 802.11ac device on the receiving end.
If you are like us, no hotel makes the reservation cut until access to free Wi-Fi has been confirmed. The quality and speeds are always a bit of a crap shoot, but it turns out it sub 1Mbps connections isn’t the only thing you might need to worry about next time you hit the road. When web developer Justin Watt booked a room at the Courtyard Marriott in Times Square, he noticed something wasn’t quite right with the pages he was viewing.
Tablets are all the rage these days, with the Apple iPad leading the pack and selling like hotcakes in stores throughout the country. Some of the more cynical Maximum PC readers may snort and say that part of the iPad's appeal is its simplicity; I've heard people comment that even a monkey could find his way around iOS. At least one monkey lover disagrees. Ken Schweller, chairman of the Great Ape Trust in Des Moines, Iowa, wants to slap modified non-Apple tablets in the hands of his hyper-intelligent primate pals to spur communication development. And he needs your help!
When it comes to mobile technology, the push to make things better, faster and smaller is non-stop and all consuming. The more functions you can cram onto a single chip, the better! Plenty of companies have thrown their proverbial hat into the convergence ring, but as the 800 lb. gorilla in the room, all eyes tend to gravitate towards Intel for trend-setting processor news. And who is Intel to disappoint? The company's already announced plans for a mobile SoC with built-in 4G, and it recently showed off new "Rosepoint" chips that combine Atom CPUs and Wi-Fi radios.
James Bond is a badass because he's always prepared for whatever situation arises. The guy's had gadgets for everything, from exploding keychains to to a stun-gun cigarette, along with just about anything you can imagine. That is, unless you imagine USB cufflinks that double as a Wi-Fi hotspot dongle in a pinch. Unlike most of James Bonds' gadgets, Wi-Fi cufflinks actually exist.
Now that we've all been spoiled by the 802.11n WLAN standard, a standard that underwent significant growing pains to get to this point (remember all those Draft-n devices?), it's time to start looking ahead to 802.11ac. How far ahead has yet to be determined, but if you ask Broadcom, the company will tell you it could become mainstream by the second quarter of 2013.
Wireless routers are not really the most sexy products these days, but Netgear is trying to change that with the just announced WNDR4700. This Media Storage Router has all sorts of goodies that go beyond the routing of network connections. The WNDR4700 comes with a 2TB hard drive and a ton of firmware features to pump up any home network.
It’s increasingly becoming a wireless world, folks. Just check out the headlines from the past week or so. On top of the omnipresent smartphone/tablet chatter, we saw the launch of next-gen “5G Wi-Fi” chips capable of streaming 1080p video without a hitch, and now, today’s news: even your SD card is going wireless. Seriously.
EnGenius Technologies announced at CES today a new line of 802.11n Wi-Fi router that the company claims are optimized for range and bandwidth-intensive consumer applications, such as VoIP calls, videoconferencing and media streaming. One of the features we find most interesting is something that router manufacturers seem to be moving away from: detachable—and therefore upgradeable—antennas.
Most of the hot new products you hear about this early in a new year come out of the desert at the CES electronics convention – which takes place next week – but Broadcom decided to kick things off early and unveil its new line of “5G Wi-Fi” chips based on the still-in-development 802.11ac standard. Yes, they push Wi-Fi faster and farther than before, and no, “5G” has nothing to do with cellular networks. It’s just Broadcom’s catchphrase for the fifth generation of Wi-Fi. But hey, marketing tricks aside, how do up to 1.3Gbps wireless speeds sound?