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IEEE 802.11ax: Broadcom Offers Chip Platform for the Next 5-GHz WLAN

Monday, August 21st, 2017 | Gadgets

Broadcom has announced the availability of the BCM43684, BCM43694 and BCM4375 chips, which are suitable for the next generation of 5 GHz WLAN systems. This makes it possible to build WLAN equipment that supports 802.11ax, the successor to 802.11ac. The ax standard is not to be confused with 802.11ay, the wireless successor of 802.11ad on the 60-GHz band.

Broadcom will market the platform, which is equally suitable for mobile devices such as smartphones, notebooks and infrastructure, as Max Wifi and thus use the ax of the standard. In addition to the obligatory significant increase in bandwidth, the use of 160 MHz channels, which, however, are already running short, are promised, 1024 QAM and the increase of range. The latter is to be improved by a factor of up to 4x. If that succeeds, that would be amazing.
Faster in sleep mode
In addition, the new platform is to save energy considerably. However, this probably only applies to the race-to-idle principle common to processors, which has also been used in past WLAN generations. The chip can switch to a power-saving mode faster due to the higher bandwidth. If the bandwidth is constantly needed, the course looks different.

Until the first products come on the market, some time should pass. The chip side is obviously finished. Qualcomm has already announced its platform in February 2017. Quantenna was already ready for an announcement in October 2016.

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