ARM says Wi-Fi too inefficient

Wi-Fi logoWhile speaking at a wireless conference in Cambridge, England on Tuesday, chipmaker ARM president Tudor Brown said the power required for wireless communications in computers is too high and the industry has a duty to reduce it.

While speaking at a wireless conference in Cambridge, England on Tuesday, chipmaker ARM president Tudor Brown said the power required for wireless communications in computers is too high and the industry has a duty to reduce it. He went on to say the Atheros Wi-Fi link on a notebook is only between 1 and 2 percent efficient. Brown believes a system is needed that draws between two or three times less power.

Brown's concerns aren't just to extend battery life but also to reduce the toxic lithium waste from old batteries of smartphones and notebooks. Radio base stations use up about twice the electrical power of other network equipment, which wastes power.

When responding to a question, Brown also said power efficiency needs to extend to servers as well, as they are used at only a fraction of their capacity. Energy used by servers will exceed that of aircraft travel by 2020 if it continues at this rate, Brown warned. Between cooling and powering them, servers use up five percent of the US energy bill.

Despite the speech, Brown did not suggest ways of reducing power use of wireless connections. Others at the conference did offer solutions such as femtocells.

Source: electronista

Tags: ARM, notebooks, Wi-Fi

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