Feeds

Wi-Fi group to update WLAN spec

Acronyms accrue as 802.11i and 802.11e arrive

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

The Wi-Fi Alliance (WFA) is so confident that the IEEE will at long last ratify the 802.11e specification as a standard that it has already come up with a marketing name for the technology.

The standard will be branded the Wireless Media Extensions (WME), and the organisation will start certifying WLAN products' ability to interoperate with other 802.11e products in September.

WME adds quality of service provisions to Wi-Fi. Essentially it priorities traffic according to the type of data being carried. Network packets carrying video data are sent in preference to those carrying web pages or email in order to ensure the more-time sensitive information gets the bandwidth it needs.

The result should be video that doesn't lose picture quality, for example. It might even make Voice over IP (VoIP) commonplace.

The 802.11e specification also includes technology the WFA is calling Wi-Fi Scheduled Media (WSM), which dedicates bandwidth segments to specific data types. However, since WSM is going to be less of a necessity for home users, the WFA is focusing its attention on WME.

The WFA managed a similar technological split with the 802.11i security specification, also expected to be ratified by the IEEE later this year. Last year, the WFA unveiled Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA), which is essentially 802.11i minus the components of the standard that require hardware acceleration. That effectively means the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).

The WPA will also begin certifying WLAN kit for 802.11i in September, probably as WPA 2. The new spec. may require new hardware, depending on whether WLAN manufacturers have anticipated the spec. and built in thus-far-unused hardware acceleration. WME and WSM updates are likely to require just a firmware update.

Both 802.11e and 802.11i are expected to be officially proclaimed standards by the IEEE this summer. ®

Related stories

Broadcom simplifies Wi-Fi security set-up
Wi-Fi Alliance preps WPA 2 security spec
Vendor group aims to boost voice over Wi-Fi
Multimedia 802.11e standard speeds up

Intelligent flash storage arrays

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Managing SSL certificates with ease
The lack of operational efficiencies and compliance pitfalls associated with poor SSL certificate management, and how the right SSL certificate management tool can help.