LONDON — The industry is honing in on a compromise proposal for the contentious IEEE 802.11n next generation WLAN standard, and a deal could be struck next week at the task group’s meeting in Hawaii.
On Wednesday (Jan. 11), the Joint Proposal (JP) team representing the final three TGn proposal groups (TGnSync, WWise, and MITMOT), seemed to bury many hatchets and voted unanimously to adopt the (fourth) Enhanced Wireless Consortium (EWC) specification.
This proposal is being finalized over the next two days before being submitted to the IEEE meeting in Hawaii, which kicks off January 16. All proponents seem hopeful it will get the required 75 percent majority before it can become the standard for the high data-rate Wi-Fi.
The EWC was formed in October, the main proponent being Intel. It aimed to bring the warring parties in the other groups together, notably the acrimony between the TGnSync and WWise camps, as well as make the 802.11n proposals more suitable for consumer and mobile devices. In the vote yesterday (Jan. 11), forty members voted for the compromise proposals, none against, and two companies abstained. This far exceeds the JP’s required quorum of 60 percent of the membership voting, and the IEEE working group’s adoption rule of 75 percent affirmative among those voting).
802.11n is predicated on MIMO (Multiple Input, Multiple Output) techniques, and much of the technology developed by Airgo Networks, to boost bandwidth by an order of magnitude above the standard of today's Wi-Fi networks. The technique makes use of "multi-path" interference that might once have been minimised to drive up the network's range. Commenting on the progress, Bill McFarland, CTO of Atheros Communications, said :“The adoption of this specification is a huge step forward for the Joint Proposal team. For the first time the team now has a complete and consistent definition for next-generation, high performance wireless LAN devices."