Trends Report

802.11n: Laying The Groundwork For The Digital Home

The State Of US Home Networking

March 4th, 2009
With contributors:
Charles Golvin , Doug Williams

Summary

The 802.11n Wi-Fi specification is still in draft mode, but network equipment vendors are going full speed ahead in marketing 802.11n equipment. For the vast majority of consumers, 802.11n's bandwidth of 300 Mbps is overkill, but its improved wireless coverage will benefit the majority of home networkers by improving network speeds and range. Vendors should focus on 802.11n's Wi-Fi coverage improvements and emphasize its benefits, not its technical specifications, to avoid exposing consumers to the alphabet soup that the networking industry has become. Ultimately, as 802.11g equipment works its way out of the retail channel and manufacturers of the wireless chips found in home networking equipment transition entirely from 802.11g to 802.11n chips, 78% of US wireless home networks will use the 802.11n standard by 2013.

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