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IEEE approves 802.11g standard

A long-awaited standard for wireless Lans that offers more carrying capacity than the existing IEEE 802.11b specification, while using the same frequencies, has won final approval.

The 802.11g standard is capable of at least 24Mbps and up to 54Mbps, while remaining backward compatible with existing 802.11b gear running at a maximum 11Mbps. Both use radio spectrum in the range of 2.4GHz. Another standard, 802.11a, defines 54Mbps gear in the 5GHz range.

Many suppliers have already been shipping equipment based on drafts of the standard for months and have said they will make those products meet the final specification through free firmware downloads.

The draft products are already driving the growth of the WLan business, which has been one of the few bright spots in a gloomy IT industry in recent years, according to market research company Dell'Oro Group.

The standards board of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers approved the specification after a standardisation process which took just over three years.

Stephen Lawson writes for IDG News Service


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