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We Know: All About 802.11n Networking Standard

What Is 802.11n Networking, And How Is It Different?

802.11n is the new wireless networking protocol, and equipment for home and office use. It is based on and backward-compatible with the 802.11g standard as well as the 802.11b and a standards. It's about ten times as fast as the 802.11g standard, though, and will probably have a better range.

Should I Get 802.11n?

If you're using 802.11n for home networking, you can buy with a reasonable expectation of it working well. You'll get blindingly fast wireless connectivity for games and data transfers, and because it's so compatible with existing network protocols, you won't have to retrofit computers that are already adequate.

However, the Gartner Group, among others, recommends against buying 802.11n for businesses in its early stages. Why? Because there are competing standards -- remember the VHS/Betamax wars? Although an agreement seems to have been reached to standardize the protocol, agreements have been known to change at the last minute. Gartner recommends waiting to be sure it is standardized..

What Else Should I Know About 802.11n?

This protocol may be fast enough to eliminate many wire-based technologies. Imagine being able to install cable at one central location, and have it broadcast to all your sets; or have speakers throughout your house that pick up a wireless signal from your stereo. There's no doubt that we'll see some changes in home technology products after this protocol starts selling.



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