Qualcomm is releasing new chipsets for access points that leverage MU-MIMO technology. Current-gen Wi-Fi systems can become easily overwhelmed when multiple users access the system simultaneously. The core reason is because Wi-Fi wasn't designed to serve multiple users at the same time. Wi-Fi sends a single stream of data to a user, then that transmission is terminated and another stream initiates for another user, but there is never more than one active data stream. These snippets in time become increasingly smaller and more frequent as more users log in, effectively throttling the network bandwidth and speed for all users.
MU-MIMO (Multi-User Multiple-Input-Multiple-Output) is a revolutionary new antenna technology that enables communication with multiple devices simultaneously over multiple streams of data. This enables the host router to act more as a switched ethernet fabric and will exponentially increase the ability for wireless routers to handle groups of users. Qualcomm's new chipsets will enable this capability with 802.11ac networks. Qualcomms offerings are going out to the enterprise first, and several vendors will begin offering products supporting MU-MIMO in the middle of 2015.
Samsung is claiming to have developed an incredible new 60GHz Wi-Fi technology, something that will bridge the gap between theoretical, and actual, real-life Wi-Fi speeds.
The South Korean giant has said that this new 60GHz Wi-Fi technology is capable of 4.6Gbps, or an insane 575MB/sec. Considering the fastest Wi-Fi technology available right now is just 866Mbps, which transfers at around 108MB/sec, this is a massive increase. The 60GHz technology would be capable of transferring 1GB in less than two seconds. Samsung's announcement of this technology teases "Unlike the existing 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi technologies, Samsung's 802.11ad standard 60 GHz Wi-Fi technology maintains maximum speed by eliminating co-channel interference, regardless of the number of devices using the same network".
The company has said that part of the success it found in its 60GHz Wi-Fi technology is that it uses millimeter waves, which travel by line of sight and are stopped by walls and other obstacles. Samsung uses wide-coverage, beam-forming antennae as well as micro beam-forming control technology to achieve the 575MB/sec, or 4.6Gbps speeds. Samsung has said that commercialization of the 60GHz Wi-Fi band spectrum would happen as soon as early 2015.
Routine network maintenance caused a coast-to-coast service outage for Time Warner Cable, with the two-hour downtime starting at 4:30 a.m. EST. The problem reportedly arose with Time Warner Cable's "Internet backbone," and it seems rather likely that human error played a role in the problem. A full investigation is underway to determine why the company's 11.4 million subscribers were temporarily offline.
Ironically, the latest Time Warner Cable service outage occurred just a couple days after Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said the company didn't file network outage reports fast enough. The federal government issued a $1.1 million dollar fine to the company.
Comcast is prepared to purchase Time Warner Cable for $45 billion. It will be one rather disliked company being purchased by a significantly larger disliked conglomerate.
Hardware manufacturer Intel has unveiled a 3G modem slightly bigger than a penny, hoping the tiny device will become popular among connected Internet of Things (IoT) devices. Promoted as the world's smallest standalone 3G modem, the Intel XMM 6255 uses the Intel Power Transceiver technology, so the 3G modem also includes power management and a power amplifier on a single chip.
The XMM 6255 chip could be used in smartwatches and other wearables, along with IoT home appliances that require wireless connectivity.
"Devices with a small form factor like a smartwatch or a sensor may not have enough space for a normal-sized 3G antenna, which can affect connectivity quality and reliability," Intel noted in a blog post. "The XMM 6255 modem is specifically designed for such devices and delivers great 3G connectivity even with small volume antennas not meeting conventional mobile phone quality standards."
Earlier, we reported that Mediabridge's lawyer threatened an Amazon buyer when he posted a review, complaining about Medialink's Wireless-N router. Amazon decided to crack a whip over Mediabridge, and barred from selling its products through the online retail giant's e-commerce website.
It started when the review posted in reddit that he was served with a letter from Mediabridge's lawyers. They demanded that he should take down the review, refrain from talking about the company and its products directly and indirectly and also agree never to purchase any of its products. The company also didn't like that he highlighted the product was a Tenda Router, according to a review site.
As one would imagine, this resulted to a Streisand effect, and many redditors were outraged by such actions. One of the commenters suggested that the reviewer should email to Mediabridge and complain about Mediabridge. Though its not sure that's what prompted the company to ban Mediabridge, but the US-based networking company's selling privileges are revoked as soon as it was possible.
Mediabridge didn't seem to like an end-user's review that he posted in Amazon about its Medialink router. But rather than taking it as a feedback, the company's lawyers threatened the user instead. The user then posted about the incident on Reddit, following the photo shots of the letters sent by the lawyers for MediaBridge.
The problem also escalated when the user highlighted that the Medialink MWN WAPR300N Wireless-N broadband router is actually a Tenda W36R router. The user also highlighted that the source of his claim is a review website small net builder who specifically mentioned that the Medialink MWN-WAPR300N router is in reality a Tenda 2368R, according to the FCC filings.
The user also expressed his opinion that some of these Amazon reviews are suspicious, and said that how can he trust Amazon review if he was legally threatened for leaving a negative review. In the end, the user posted that others should save their money and buy routers from established brands such as ASUS, TP-Link, Linksys or Cisco.
Fast food restaurant Burger King is expanding its business relationship with AT&T, in an effort to roll out Whopper Wi-Fi nationwide. Using the plug-and-play AT&T Ready Zone, restaurants like Burger King are able to more easily roll out Wi-Fi functionality to restaurant guests.
"Whopper Wi-Fi is about improving the in-restaurant experience for our guests," said Alex Macdeo, Burger King North America President, in a press statement. "Most of our guests carry smartphones or tablets, and this upgrade makes their time with us easier and more enjoyable. We are committed to enhancing our digital platforms across the board and having Whopper Wi-Fi is just the beginning."
There is growing competition among fast food and "fast casual" restaurants, and free Wi-Fi offers a competitive advantage over rivals.
When Linksys announced its WRT54G-inspired WRT1900AC wireless router back at CES 2014, techies everywhere had a moment of nostalgia, and remembered the little blue router they had in their homes as children. Those techies can now own the throw-back as Linksys has just announced the release of the WRT1900AC 802.11ac wireless router.
The new WRT1900AC features a dual-core 1.2GHz processor, 128MB of RAM, and eSATA and USB 3.0 ports for network storage. Speeds up to 300Mbps on 5Ghz, and up to 600Mbps on the 2.4Ghz band, with an 802.11ac connection are said to be achievable, and Linksys says that the WRT1900AC is the first consumer-grade Wi-Fi router to feature four antennas for added wireless coverage. TweakTown's own Tyler Bernath has one of these on his test bench right now and will have a review up soon!
Google says that it has already laid about 6,000 miles of fiber optic broadband cable throughout Kansas City, and now the company is ready to expand even further. The company plans on extending its Google Fiber coverage to residents in South Kansas City, Kansas City, Grandview, Raytown and Gladstone areas.
Google says that if there is enough demand in these areas and residents sign up with a $10 registration fee, then they will expand their fiber network to these areas just weeks after the signups are complete. There is a deadline to signup for Google Fiber and its ranges based on the area you live in so check the list after the jump and sign up as fast as possible!
If you live or work in a building with a lot of other people that have their own Wi-Fi networks, you know firsthand that too many networks can cause interference for everyone and slow things down. A group of researchers from Stanford University is working on a new shared wireless network system called BeHop that is designed to make for faster wireless networking by sharing inside buildings.
BeHop is a single, dense Wi-Fi infrastructure that can be centrally managed, but allows individual users to manage their own portion like a private Wi-Fi network. Users on the Behop network will each get their own SSID, passwords, and other settings.
The big thing with this shared, yet private network is that it is set up using cheap consumer grade access points. The hardware used in the tests was provided by NetGear and runs custom firmware. The test system the researchers set up let the individual users name and secure their own networks just as they would if the router was in their room.