The IEEE has published expanded standards for increased speeds and simpler communications in Wi-Fi. The revision, called IEEE 802.11-2012, increases the scope of the existing networking standards to include more supported devices and improve cellular network hand-offs. This is the fourth revision of the standard since the original publication in 1997.
Amendments that appear in the new proposal include modifications to PHY and MAC to enable a possible 600Mbps throughput, direct-link setup, radio resource measurement, operations within the 3650-3700MHz band, and mesh networking. Usage within vehicles also makes the cut for this edition, following the wider use of in-car networking.
Bruce Kraemer, chair of the IEEE 802.11 working group, explained the reasoning behind the expanded standard as a desire for "continuous enhancement of the standard." To that end, he also said that work on the next generation of IEEE 802.11 has already commenced with a variety of project goals including extensions that may increase the data rate by up to a factor of 10, improved audio/video delivery, increased range and reductions in power consumption.
No timetable for when the expansions and improvements might be adopted commercially was announced.