Tiny Combo Chips Pack a Big Punch with 5G WiFi for Mobile Devices

This article first appeared in the Broadcom Connected Blog

Broadcom is taking 5G WiFi technology to the next level with the BCM4335 combo chip for the entire mobile device ecosystem.

The power of 5G WiFi takes connectivity to a new level, delivering amped-up access to HD video, streaming music and digital photos via smartphones, smart TVs and other consumer electronics.

Since the unveiling of Broadcom’s first 5G WiFi chip at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show a number of companies have launched products with the 802.11ac technology, including networking products such as routers, as well as client devices like notebooks and PCs.

Today, Broadcom is taking 5G WiFi technology to the next level with the launch of the BCM4335, a new combo chip designed for mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets and ultrabooks. The BCM4335 includes a complete 5G WiFi system – along with Bluetooth 4.0 and FM radio – on a single, integrated chip.

With this combo chip, Broadcom is the first company to sample 5G WiFi solutions for every major wireless product segment. The BCM4335 complements the growing ecosystem of 5G WiFi access products and will bring the full benefits of the technology to the mobile experience. It enables a more seamless and satisfying experience when streaming video, sharing files or synchronizing media libraries to smartphones, tablets and mobile PC products.

Broadcom combo chips are among the most widely adopted in the wireless industry. The key to its success? The combo chip. Broadcom’s engineered complete radio systems onto tiny pieces of silicon, providing device makers  the flexibility to easily add the most advanced wireless capabilities to any platform.

 The BCM4335 is Broadcom’s most advanced combo chip yet, packing an incredible amount of networking and connectivity  into a chip that’s small and energy efficient enough to fit into the sleekest designs. As the new chip appears in smartphones and mobile devices in the next year, consumers will begin to experience the full benefit of radically fast, reliable Wi-Fi in the palms of their hands.

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5G WiFi Lineup Continues to Grow: Welcome D-Link

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in the Broadcom Connected Blog

The 5G WiFi ecosystem just continues to grow, as D-Link today became the latest company to offer a product equipped with Broadcom’s 5G WiFi technology.

The Power of 5G WiFi

Called the Cloud Router 5700 (DIR-865L), D-Link’s product uses 802.11ac technology (5G WiFi) to deliver wireless speeds of up to 1,750 Mbps – three times faster than the previous generation of Wi-Fi, 802.11n. The differentiation comes not only from gigabit speeds but also higher capacity and broader coverage for home networks – features that are enhancing the adoption of high-bandwidth gaming and HD streaming applications.

Broadcom has been leading the market adoption of 802.11ac by being first to sample and ship the technology. It’s focused on enabling the 5G WiFi ecosystem across all major wireless product segments, including routers and mobile devices. D-Link is the latest company to further enable this transition to faster, more reliable wireless coverage for HD-quality video streaming and near instantaneous data synch.

How fast is Broadcom’s 5G WiFi and what does it enable? Check out the fun video below for a sampling of its speed and click through the interactive graphic for more detailed look at its capabilities.

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Broadcom’s 5G WiFi Makes Technology Top 100 List for 2012

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in the Broadcom Connected Blog

R&D Magazine has named Broadcom’s 5G WiFi family of chips among the 2012 R&D 100 award winners, naming the innovation one of the 100 most technologically significant products of the last year.

Broadcom’s 5G WiFi SoCs were introduced in January at CES, based on the 802.11ac IEEE standard. They were designed to replace the aging 802.11n technology and satisfy the demand for faster, more reliable Wi-Fi in the hyper-connected age of tablets, smartphones and the connected home. Since then, the technology has been launched by a number of partners, including Netgear, Buffalo Technology, Asus and Belkin, which showcased the technology at a Connected Home event in New York City this week.

Photo Gallery: Belkin’s Connected Home event in New York City

The Power of 5G WiFi

5G WiFi delivers up to gigabit speeds of connectivity with six times more power efficiency than the previous generation of Wi-Fi. It operates on a different spectrum than 802.11n, increasing signal range and passing through more obstacles to overcome some of those dreaded “deadspots.” It was designed with the modern multi-tasker and family home in mind, able to connect several devices and enable multiple video streams at once, without pauses for buffering.

Broadcom’s 5G WiFi chip family is in excellent company on R&D Magazine’s list alongside innovations such as energy technologies from NASA and a laser and photonic development from a laboratory at MIT.

The award is celebrating its 50th anniversary and honors products from a range of disciplines including telecom, physics, software, manufacturing and biotech developed by companies, universities, research firms and government labs.

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5G WiFi: Pioneering the New Generation of Wireless Connectivity

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in the Broadcom Connected Blog

In the tech industry, five years can be an eternity.

The iPhone hit retail shelves in June 2007 — five years ago this month. That same year, 802.11n — the fourth-generation of Wi-Fi technology — was introduced as a wireless technology that would meet the new consumer demands for medium-resolution video, such as those found on YouTube, a then two-year-old start-up that had just been acquired by Google.

Today, smartphone shipments around the globe are up more than 600 percent since those long ago days of 2007. Tablet PCs such as the iPad, which weren’t even on the consumer radar five years ago, have reached mainstream penetration. Nearly 73 million tablets were shipped worldwide in 2011, according to research firm NPD DisplaySearch. Now, things like Internet-connected gaming consoles, set-top boxes and TVs are joining the Wi-Fi ecosystem.

The power of 5G WiFi

Certainly, the architects of 802.11n did not design the technology with this sort of usage in-mind. Just as the second generation of Wi-Fi, designed for emailing, was succeeded by a third generation built to support a data rich Web surfing experience, the evolution of Wi-Fi continues today with the arrival of 802.11ac, or 5G WiFi.

Broadcom kick-started the 5G WiFi movement with the announcement of 802.11ac chipsets at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show, introducing the first steps in building a more robust and reliable wireless pipeline.

While 5G WiFi is designed to meet the needs of today’s consumers and their computing lifestyles, the engineers have also looked ahead at the other uses that 5G WiFi is poised to accelerate. Consider that 5G WiFi works on a spectrum that’s different from its predecessor and uses beam-forming and other innovations to penetrate all forms of building materials, including concrete. It’s a shift that will help eliminate so-called “deadspots” in a Wi-Fi network.

But that’s just one difference. Consider the following:

  • 5G WiFi is at the center of a movement called “The Internet of Things,” the idea that non-computing devices, such as home appliances or medical devices, can be networked to interact with smartphones, tablets and even hospital computer systems to provide convenience, energy efficiency and advanced health care services.
  • 5G WiFi is the needed link to a fully networked television experience, one where content from a variety of sources — online providers, as well as pay-TV operators — can be seamlessly transferred from one screen, such as a TV, to another screen, such as a smartphone.
  • 5G WiFi is considered to be one of the technologies that will help video chat and conferencing services to gain traction among mainstream users.
  • 5G WiFi could be the savior to mobile carriers whose networks are becoming overloaded by data-hungry devices. 5G WiFi’s greater capacity for offloading data traffic provides the capabilities for many more simultaneous connections, offering a better user experience.
  • 5G WiFi chips, which will transfer files faster than previous wireless chips, are considered to be up to six times more power efficient. That means mobile phones, for example, will be able to go longer between battery rechargings while still handling more cumbersome tasks.

While Broadcom initially forecast the arrival of 5G WiFi-powered products for summer 2012, its partners — excited about the prospects of next-generation Wi-Fi services — jump-started the efforts with announcements of routers and other retail products in the spring months. The race is on to implement the fastest Wi-Fi yet.

Since that CES announcement, Broadcom has continued to innovate and expand the potential reach of 5G WiFi, including the February launch of a 5G WiFi system-on-chip (SoC) designed to address growing demand for gigabit speeds in enterprise, wireless cloud networks and carrier access.

At the Computex show in Taiwan earlier this month, Broadcom introduced new, highly integrated SoCs designed to unlock the full potential of 5G WiFi networking for home gateways and SMB access points, network attached storage (NAS) boxes and other devices.

Broadcom’s new SoCs allow device makers to bring 5G WiFi routers, gateways and access points to market with full features and performance at price points that will ignite the growth of the developing 5G WiFi ecosystem.

With these new chips already sampling to Broadcom’s customers, the next generation of Wi-Fi featuring gigabit speeds is well on its way!

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