What is 802.11ac (Gigabit Wi-Fi)? - Definition from WhatIs.com

Definition

802.11ac (Gigabit Wi-Fi)

Part of the Wireless LANs glossary:

802.11ac, also known as Gigabit Wi-Fi, is a proposed specification in the 802.11 family applicable to WLANs (wireless local area networks). 802.11ac represents an extension or update of the current 802.11a standard.

Networks using 802.11ac will operate in the 5-GHz (gigahertz) band using OFDM (orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing), just as 802.11a does. The enhancements supported by 802.11ac will facilitate simultaneous streaming of HD (high definition) video to multiple clients in homes and businesses, as well as faster wireless synchronization and backup of large files.

New features that will exist in 802.11ac, in addition to those carried over from 802.11a, include:

  • Channel width up to 160 MHz (megahertz).
  • Single-link throughput of 500 Mbps (megabits per second) or more.
  • Multi-station WLAN throughput of 1 Gbps (gigabit per second) or more.
  • 400-ns (nanosecond) short guard interval.
  • Low-density parity check code.
  • Space-time block coding.
  • Up to eight spatial streams.
  • Transmit beamforming.

Finalization of the 802.11ac standard is expected in late 2012, with formal approval taking place by the end of 2013.

For information about other specifications in the 802 family, see the IEEE 802 Wireless Standards Fast Reference.

This was last updated in August 2012
Contributor(s): Stan Gibilisco
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Related Terms

Definitions

  • virtual private network (VPN)

    - A virtual private network creates an encrypted connection over a less secure network when the network infrastructure cannot provide enough security to connected systems. (SearchEnterpriseWAN.com)

  • White Space Wi-Fi (White-Fi)

    - White space Wi-Fi, also known as White-Fi, specified in IEEE 802.11af: The use of frequencies made available by the absence of analog-to-air TV signals to create Wi-Fi networks with greater range, ... (WhatIs.com)

  • mobile hotspot

    - A mobile hotspot is wireless Internet connectivity that is enabled by a dedicated hardware device or a smartphone feature that shares the phone's cellular data. Mobile hotspots are also known as po... (WhatIs.com)

Glossaries

  • Wireless LANs

    - Terms related to wireless LANs, including definitions about Wi-Fi and words and phrases about wireless access points, wireless controllers, wireless LAN security and WLAN configuration.

  • Internet applications

    - This WhatIs.com glossary contains terms related to Internet applications, including definitions about Software as a Service (SaaS) delivery models and words and phrases about web sites, e-commerce ...

Ask a Question About 802.11ac (Gigabit Wi-Fi)Powered by ITKnowledgeExchange.com

Get answers from your peers on your most technical challenges

Tech TalkComment

Share
Comments

    Results

    Contribute to the conversation

    All fields are required. Comments will appear at the bottom of the article.