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Intel, Microsoft, Dell band together for WiGig

Thu, 05/07/2009 - 8:15am
Peter Svensson, AP Technology Writer

NEW YORK (AP) – Wi-Fi, WiMAX, WirelessHD, WHDI and now ... WiGig?

Computer and home entertainment industry leaders, including Intel, Microsoft, Dell and Panasonic, said Wednesday that they're forming a new association to create an even faster wireless technology for zipping large files around the home.

WiGig will be more than 10 times faster than Wi-Fi, and it should be able to deliver high-definition video from computers and set-top boxes to TV sets without the need for unsightly wires, the companies said.

The range will be shorter than Wi-Fi – WiGig will work well within a room, and perhaps extend to an adjacent room, as well.

There are already several technologies competing for the job of in-home wireless video transmission. WirelessHD, championed by SiBEAM of Sunnyvale, Calif., is designed specifically to link set-top boxes and Blu-ray players to TV sets. WHDI, invented by Amimon of Israel, uses Wi-Fi-like technology to do the same thing.

Ali Sadri, chairman of the newly formed Wireless Gigabit Alliance and an Intel executive, said WiGig was not a direct competitor to technologies like WirelessHD, but has broader goals. It aims to link not just TVs, but cell phones, video cameras and PCs, as well.

Both WiGig and WirelessHD will use the 60 gigahertz frequency band, a largely unused space in the airwaves that allows for extremely high transfer speeds at short ranges. Sadri said WiGig will be capable of transfers at 6 gigabits per second, roughly fast enough to transmit the contents of a DVD in 15 seconds.

The WiGig Alliance aims to complete a specification, or basic blueprint for compatible devices, late this year. Products could follow next year.

More Broadband Direct 05/07/09:
•  Data, telephony help boost Charter's Q1 results
•  Cablevision thrives in Q1
•  Time Warner Cable picks OpenTV's ad management platform
•  DirecTV Group's Q1 profit falls 46%
•  Build your own hotspot with Verizon device
•  Qwest to offer free Wi-Fi
•  Cisco earnings fall 21%, beat expectations
•  SCTE announces chapter award winners for last year
•  Intel, Microsoft, Dell band together for WiGig
•  Embarq's Q1 profit falls 18%
•  More cell phone users dropping landlines
•  Broadband Briefs for 05/07/09

 

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