Monday, September 14, 2009

Wi-Fi 802.11n approved - do I care?

The technical blogosphere is buzzing. BBC, CNET, neowin and everyone else cover the approval of the 802.11n high-throughput wireless LAN standard by the IEEE.
It took almost 7 and we have a 6 time faster wireless connection. Most vendors already use it or require a firmware upgrade for the existing hardware.

As always, I try to look at the news in the OneManITShop eyes:
How would it change MY life?
Will it make a difference to MY Shop?

Networks that already use wireless will be better off upgrading to the new standard if hardware permit. But under the current economy I wouldn't invest in new hardware unless you work with huge files or video (but then, why are you on wireless?).
If you're just on the verge of installing a new wireless network or expand the current infrastructure you have to make sure 802.11n is supported. The problem is you 'll have hard time any piece of hardware that does not support it so it is a non issue.

The big difference would be for those who try to make a case for wireless. If you're one of those your case got 6 times stronger. Since most PCs come with a Gig NIC I see the network as the bottleneck and this is where you can make your case: Using 802.11n get you closer to the Gig NIC but with the flexibility of a laptop. You do not compromise that much on bandwidth as you had to with previous standards and you get to keep the wireless environment.
I see it as a big plus. With the right rap your management will too.

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