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IEEE releases next-gen powerline spec to gadget makers

Standards war heats up

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Standards organisation the IEEE has published the final version of its 1901 ethernet-over-mains specification.

The standard was actually completed in December 2010, but its publication means that manufacturers not directly involved in its creation can now obtain the specs and start designing product that can use it.

Such gadgets are expected to appear before the year is out.

So to is equipment based on the rival powerline standard, G.hn, which comes from the telecoms standards organisation the ITU. Both have powerful supporters among chip and device makers, telcos and service providers.

It's hoped that chip makers will support both specifications, making use of the two standards' interoperabililty technology.

IEEE 1901 covers not only powerline networking in the home - here it's claimed to enable raw data transfer speeds "in excess of 500Mb/s" - but also the 1.5km between sub-stations and homes. ®

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