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May 12, 2009

Wireless Gigabit Alliance Creating 60 Ghz Standard for Multi-Gigabit Communication Speed Applications

Wireless Gigabit Alliance will be creating a 60 Ghz communication standard. The group’s vision is to create a global ecosystem of interoperable products based on this specification, which will unify the next generation of entertainment, computing and communications devices at speeds more than 10 times faster than today’s wireless LANs. All products based on the WGA specification will be capable of at least 1 Gbps at a typical range of 10 meters, and some implementations will be capable of speeds more than 6 Gbps at greater distances.

EETimes has coverage on the standard that is being formed.

The group aims to get to market ahead of official efforts in the IEEE to develop a 60 GHz version of Wi-Fi targeting minimum throughput of a Gbit/s. The 802.11ad group hopes to finish market requirements documents this year and put out a call for technical proposals sometime in 2010 with the aim at selecting a standard in 2011.

The Wireless Gigabit Alliance that aims to release later this year a specification for 60 GHz networking at rates up to 6 Gbits/second. The technology will compete with startups such as Amimon and SiBeam that have rallied similar alliances around their technologies and already delivered working chips to OEM partners

The spec uses separate protocol adaptation layers to target a wide range of applications. They range from whole home video with a range of 10 meters to wireless HDMI and lower power Gbit/s links over five meters for devices such as on cellphones.

"A lot of people anticipate 60 GHz products that will include 2.4 and 5 GHz Wi-Fi as well," said Bill McFarland, chief technology officer of Atheros, a WiGig member. "I definitely think we can support tri-band at 65nm," he added.

SiBeam is the closest competitor to the WiGig Alliance. SiBeam's chip designed solely for use as a wireless version of HDMI was demonstrated in TVs from Panasonic and Toshiba at CES in January. Its WirelessHD Alliance includes members such as Broadcom, Intel, LG, Samsung and Sony who already are working on a second-generation spec.


- 60 GHz technology will enable you to make more compact handheld products that function faster, better and cheaper, while decreasing power consumption.
- Richer, higher resolution and more extensive use of multimedia and video will be possible
- 60 GHz technology will enable manufacturers to place radios in exceedingly smaller form factors, low battery consumption and minimal part count.

More than 15 Big technology firms have allied to push the new standard.

· Atheros Communications, Inc.
· Broadcom Corporation
· Dell, Inc.
· Intel Corporation
· LG Electronics Inc.
· Marvell International LTD.
· MediaTek Inc.
· Microsoft Corporation
· NEC Corporation
· Nokia Corporation
· Panasonic Corporation
· Samsung Electronics Co.
· Wilocity





Fast and Energy Efficient
60 GHz is the ultimate complement to both 2.4 and 5 GHz. The 60 GHz band simply has much more bandwidth available (7-9 GHz of spectrum) vs. 83.5 MHz in the 2.4 GHz band – which enables much higher data rates. Applications that require multi-gigabit per second speeds (like uncompressed video transmission) to operate will need to run in 60 GHz. Other applications that lend themselves to lower speeds, but require operation throughout the home are better suited to traditional “whole home coverage” 802.11 in the 2.4 and 5GHz bands.

The WGA specification will include a high-efficiency PHY mode for mobile devices, with error-control schemes and MAC-layer features that are optimized for energy efficiency.


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