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Wireless USB rides again

Version 1.1 a close talker

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The Wireless USB 1.1 specification – just released by the USB Implementers Forum – promises near-field communication (NFC) and battery-life improvements.

"Consumers want a fast, easy-to-use solution to wirelessly transfer content from PCs to devices," said USB-IF president and chairman Jeff Ravencraft. He's of the opinion that his organization can satisfy that ardent desire: "Wireless USB 1.1 is the solution supporting robust, high-speed wireless connectivity among devices," he said.

Perhaps, but Wireless USB hasn't exactly set the world on fire since products based on it began appearing commercially in 2007. With the 1.1 spec now finalized, however, Wireless USB champions such as Alereon, Belkin, Netgear, and others will have more to work with.

NFC support, for example, should allow Wireless USB devices to create devices that are "even easier to install and use," according to the USB-IF, since proximity-based association means that all you'll need to do to get devices to communicate will be to snuggle them up to one another.

Battery life of 1.1 devices should improve due to lower idle-power requirements and promised improved power efficiency. Devices built to the spec will also be backward-compatible with Wireless USB devices that are already out in the field.

You can click to download a copy of the Wireless USB Revision 1.1 specification. ®

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