New WirelessMAN Standard Approved
A new broadband wireless metropolitan area network (WirelessMAN, IEEE 802.16a) standard from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has been approved. WirelessMan allows for broadband wireless access in a large metropolitan network.
The standard, IEEE 802.16a, is an extension of the global IEEE 802.16 WirelessMAN standard for 10 to 66 GHz published in April 2002. As in the base 802.16 standard, the advanced technology it defines is designed from first principles to support multimedia services such as videoconferencing, voice and gaming. New features, including an optional mesh architecture, are also included.
"The new WirelessMAN standard is a groundbreaking development that changes the landscape for providers and customers of high-speed networks," said Roger Marks, Chair of the 802.16 Working Group on Broadband Wireless Access. "The standard makes highly efficient use of bandwidth and supports voice, video and data applications with the quality that customers demand."
The 802.16 standard creates a platform on which to build a broadband wireless industry using high-rate systems that install rapidly without extensive metropolitan cable infrastructures. It was created in a two-year, open-consensus process that involved hundreds of engineers from the world's leading operators and vendors.
The standard enables interoperability among devices from multiple manufacturers. It includes a medium access control layer (MAC) that supports multiple physical layer specifications. The physical layer is optimized for bands from 10 to 66 GHz.
"The new IEEE 802.16a standard reshapes the broadband landscape," says Roger Marks, Chair of the 802.16 Working Group on Broadband Wireless Access. "It closes the first-mile gap, giving users an easily installable, wire-free method to access core networks for multimedia applications.
"Because the technology integrates well with IEEE 802.11 wireless LANs, IEEE 802.16a base stations are excellent candidates for wirelessly linking 802.11 hot spots to the Internet. The standard will also play a vital role in underdeveloped regions in which advanced wired infrastructures are unavailable."
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