New Wireless Standard 802.11AC

A new wireless standard should be ratified next year, 802.11 ac. They expect to have chipsets shipping early next year, with the standard ratified at the end of 2013. Some consumer products are already shipping, but they are pre-standard and may not be upgradeable to the released standard.

802.11 ac will have some changes to it. The first change is it will only run in the 5 GHZ spectrum. To get the speed that was needed, they needed to move into that spectrum.  802.11 AC will support over 1 GB when phase 2 of the standard is implemented.

Some things to consider with this new wireless standard. First and foremost, you will need an upgraded wireless card to take advantage of the speed. Experts figure that the IPAD4 will include 802.11 AC support and notebook manufactures will be shipping it next year.

You will have to maintain a dual network to support clients that run in the 2.4 GHZ spectrum. Most of the manufactures will release access points with dual radios in them or you will place 802.11AC in certain locations

Also, to get the full speed, you will need 1 GB uplinks to the Access Points along with power over Ethernet plus. They figure the access points will draw at least 30 watts of power. You will need either Power injectors or a POE+ switch.

Finally, a site survey or redesign of your wireless will more than likely be necessary once 802.11 ac becomes a viable shipping product. Much like in the 2.4 wireless spectrum  channels 1, 6, 11 were not overlapping, it will be the same with 802.11ac they are designing a wider band which will require multiple channels in the 5GHZ spectrum, meaning channel placement is important.  With some Vendors, such as Meru, you do not need to worry about channel placement.

If you are making a wireless decision, make sure you ask about 802.11 AC.

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