MANHASSET, N.Y. The IEEE on Thursday (June 12) gave its stamp of approval to two new wireless local- and personal-area networking standards and two corresponding recommended practices. The move is expected to open the floodgates to product introductions and upgrades while ensuring interoperability between those products.
The most anticipated of the four are the IEEE 802.11g and 802.15.3 standards for WLAN and WPAN connectivity, respectively.
The newly approved 802.11g standard specifies data rates of up to 54 Mbits/s in the 2.45-GHz band. While 802.11g uses orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM), mandatory provisions have been made within the standard to make it inherently compatible with the well-established 802.11b standard at 11 Mbits/s, which uses complementary code keying (CCK) modulation. Both .11g and .11b operate at ranges of up to 300 feet.
The 802.15.3 standard for High Rate WPANs also operates in the 2.45-GHz band and at similar rates, from 11 to 55 Mbit/s, but is designed for shorter-range (1 to 50 meters), very-low-power operation. It also uses time division, multiple access (TDMA) protocol.
The use of TDMA makes the .15.3 spec suitable for its target application: small consumer devices, many of which will be operating in the same environment in close proximity. It features quality of service, connection management, advanced power management modesallowing long and QoS synchronized sleep modes, ad hoc and peer-to-peer topology support, mesh support and enhanced security.
While 802.11g products based on the draft standard are already available, products based on the new 802.15.3 standard are not expected to appear until 2004.
The two recommended practices approved today are for 802.15.2 and 802.11f. The first, 802.15.2, addresses the coexistence issue between WLANs and WPANs operating in the 2.45-GHz bands, such as Bluetooth, 802.15.3 WPANs and 802.11b and g WLANs.
The second, the 802.11f Inter Access Point Protocol, ensures interoperability between access points from multiple vendors, which primarily enables client roaming.