Alereon is a Texas chipmaker that's talking big, saying it's come up with a little processor that cranks out ultra wideband (UWB) goodness in frequencies that can be used the world over. That means wireless USB using the chip's ultra-wide band frequencies might just be able to operate at speeds equivalent to USB 2.0. The catch? The signal can only travel about 10 feet, but the good news is it consumes very little power.

Haven't we already seen some of this wireless USB technology?

Sure, companies such as Belkin have introduced wireless USB stuff using other chipsets, but they aren't able to transmit and receive frequencies used all over the world. That just might be the holdup here. Enter Alereon's AL5000 chip family, the first that can transmit and receive from 3.1 to 10.6GHz. That means worldwide ultra wideband connectivity for wireless USB, WiMedia and Bluetooth. Expect to see the tech in wireless hard drives and cameras this year. Bring it.

Press Release [Alereon, via Technology Review]