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WiGig crew to cut DisplayPort cables

60GHz high-speed wireless tech to support screens

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

VESA, the organisation behind DisplayPort and past monitor connection technologies, must have fallen a little out of love with wireless connectivity. Two years after entering into an alliance with WiGig, the 60GHz band high-speed WLAN standard, it this week felt the need to renew its vows.

Highlighting the two institutions’ “renewed collaboration”, the WiGig Alliance and VESA have announced the formation of a working group focused on ensuring DisplayPort signalling streams smoothly over WiGig’s ultrawideband links, a key step, they both believe, in eliminating the cables that currently tie different bits of computer kit together.

The upshot will be the formal certification of WiGig for DisplayPort compatibility, but neither body could say when this might take place.

Vesa first gave WiGig its thumbs up back in 2010 when the Alliance unveiled the protocol adaption layer (PAL) that would become known as the WiGig Display Extension (WDE) but back then was WiGig AV. WDE subsequently added HDMI support to the spec, which was published in 2011.

VESA didn't say why it has renewed its affection for WiGig now. Most likely it's because, the specs having been defined, we're getting close to the point where chip makers and, in turn, hardware vendors are capable of delivering it.

WiGig is capable of maintaining data transfer rates of up to 7Gb/s in the 60GHz band. It is based on the 802.11ad wireless network standard augmented with peripheral connection oriented PALs such as WDE and the WiGig Bus Extension, which is designed to host PCI Express and USB traffic wirelessly.

Indeed, WiGig is increasingly being pitched more as a cable elimination technology than as a high-speed close-proximity WLAN. ®

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