WiGig Alliance Takes Big Step Towards 10x Faster Wireless

WiGig, which its alliance members hope is the next major wireless spec, finally completed its unified specification. The tech gets speeds up to 7Gbps (10 times faster than Wi-Fi) and manages to stay backwards-compatible with existing 802.11 specs.

WiGig, just as a refresher, uses the currently empty 60GHz spectrum, and is capable of multi-gigabit communication. Rollout of WiGig-compatible products is still a long ways off—think mid-2011 at the earliest—but the alliance is slowly working towards that eventual release. Its lineup of supporting members is impressive, counting biggies like Microsoft, Samsung, Nokia, Intel, Dell, and now Nvidia among its board of directors, and a bunch more listed as contributors, so it's got some muscle behind it—but it remains to be seen if it'll really become the next Wi-Fi. The finished WiGig spec includes:

* Supports data transmission rates up to 7 Gbps – more than ten times faster than the highest 802.11n rate
* Supplements and extends the 802.11 Medium Access Control (MAC) layer and is backward compatible with the IEEE 802.11 standard
* Physical layer enables both the low power and the high performance WiGig devices, guaranteeing interoperability and communication at gigabit rates
* Protocol adaptation layers are being developed to support specific system interfaces including data buses for PC peripherals and display interfaces for HDTVs, monitors and projectors
* Support for beamforming, enabling robust communication at distances beyond 10 meters
* Widely used advanced security and power management for WiGig devices

WiGig is hoping to deliver the spec to its alliance members in the first quarter of 2010. [WiGig]