When I write about wireless, it’s usually about Wi-Fi and the speed you need to stream video. But in this post I’m looking at it from a slightly different perspective – Intel’s perspective.
The company has laid out plans to manufacture a “wire free” laptop by 2016. What is that exactly? It means no charging cables, no display cables, no bulky docks on your desktop, and no little USB adaptors needed for your wireless USB devices.
The next generation Intel chips will support existing Wi-Fi networks and a new wireless standard called WiGig. This dual capability allows laptops (and potentially other devices) to remain in constant connection, not just with the Internet but also peripherals like monitors.
WiGig is the heart of much of the technology Intel envisions in their upcoming laptops (though wireless charging is provided by magnetic resonance). WiGig is the official name for the 802.11ad wireless standard developed by the Wi-Fi alliance. If you hadn’t guessed, WiGig offers transfer speeds in the Gigabit per second range (up to 25 Gbps in theory). Estimates say a two minute HD video could be uploaded in just three seconds (compared to about a minute over Wi-Fi).
It all sounds pretty great, but why is Intel focused on using this to make us wire-free rather than all of us rushing to get these great speeds on every device? WiGig operates differently than standard Wi-Fi (you can read a summary of the technical details here). The biggest difference, practically speaking, is range. WiGig is only effective below 9 metres. That’s more equivalent to what you see with Bluetooth devices.
So you can get great connectivity, as long as you don’t go too far. But that makes WiGig perfect for Intel’s vision of a wire free existence when it comes to laptops. I for one, will welcome the day when I don’t have to manage the mess of wires at my desk and on the go. And if it also means I can get easy, blazing fast video streaming to my TV from my laptop so much the better.
And if you want to catch a glimpse of what that life might be like, check out Intel’s video from their blog here:.