IEEE and the IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) announced availability of the IEEE 802.11ai amendment, which provides a framework for “Fast Initial Link Set-up (FILS)” methods, enhancing end-user experience in high-density WLAN environments, and the IEEE 802.11 standard revision that enables multi-gigabit throughput in the 5GHz and 60GHz spectrum bands.
The IEEE 802.11 standard is revised to include amendments that enable multi-gigabit throughput in 5GHz and 60GHz spectrum bands, together with MAC enhancements. The IEEE 802.11ae-2012 delivers prioritization of management frames; IEEE 802.11aa-2012 offers MAC enhancements for audio video streaming; IEEE 802.11ad-2012 delivers enhancements for high throughput in the 60 GHz band; IEEE 802.11ac-2013 offers enhancements for high throughput for operation in bands below 6 GHz; and IEEE 802.11af-2013 caters to Television White Spaces (TVWS) operation.
These IEEE 802.11 standard enhancements offer improved physical layer capabilities within the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands, as well as a WLAN solution for both the 60 GHz and TVWS bands. At the medium access control layer, enhancements include flow control of management frames, video and audio streaming enhancements, together with the ability for devices to use database control for TVWS band operation. Timing Measurement mechanisms have been extended to support finer precision applications such as ranging and positioning.
IEEE 802.11ai addresses challenges where a large number of mobile users are continually entering and leaving an existing extended service set (ESS) coverage area. The amendment provides scalability for a high number of users simultaneously entering an ESS, minimizes time spent initializing a link, and provides secure authentication. In effect, IEEE 802.11ai improves user connectivity in high-density environments, such as arenas, stadiums, airports, shopping malls, as well as for automotive systems, allowing for a more secure and reliable connection, and enabling more efficient spectrum use by optimizing the protocol overhead in high-density user environments.
“IEEE 802.11ai enables low-delay communications for a large number of users within a confined space, thereby establishing it as a proven reliable and logical choice for the development of products serving 5G applications,” said Hiroshi Mano, IEEE 802.11ai Task Group chair. “Enhancing the end-user experience in high-density WLAN environments is a key concern, and this standard revision brings vast, impactful and measurable improvements to the technology.”
“The development of the IEEE 802.11 standard supports WLAN evolution in new directions, providing a rich base of technology across multiple frequency bands that enables product and solution developers to fully exploit the enhancements to this technology,” said Adrian Stephens, chair of the IEEE 802.11 Working Group.
IEEE 802.11 defines the technology for the world’s premier WLAN products. IEEE 802.11-based products are often branded as “Wi-Fi” in the market. IEEE 802.11 standards underpin wireless networking applications around the world, such as wireless access to the Internet from offices, homes, airports, hotels, restaurants, trains and aircraft. IEEE 802.11’s relevance continues to expand with the emergence of new applications, such as the smart grid, wireless docking and the “Internet of Things.”