Community Expert Day 1/17/14

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New Contributor
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎01-17-2014

Clarification on 802.11ac Wave 1 client side chipset support for MU-MIMO

Hello,

 

First, thank you for creating the excellent whitepaper 802.11ac In-Depth. I found it extremely useful and very well written. 

 

My question is around a statement made on the Aruba post here:

http://community.arubanetworks.com/t5/Technology-Blog/What-Wave-of-802-11ac-is-Right-for-You/ba-p/124739

 

In particular the block of text reads:

"The one catch with MU-MIMO is that it will require new client hardware since both the AP and client need to be designed with the MU-MIMO capability. Therefore it will take until 2016, after the Wave 2 chipsets appear, for clients to become pervasive and be able to leverage the benefits of MU-MIMO."

 

Would it be possible to elaborate / clarify this statement as it is quite signicant on the Wait for Wave 2 vs. Deploy Wave 1 today decision?

 

Based on the Aruba 802.11ac In-Depth whitepaper, it would appear the Wi-Fi alliance will have another certification round for Wave 2 devices. I am not sure exactly what they plan on making mandatory vs. the IEEE 802.11ac standard.

 

Does the statement above mean that all the currently shipping 802.11ac client side hardware/chipsets will not be able to support MU-MIMO when the functionality ships on the AP or that they may have the functionality today but it is not part of the Wi-Fi Alliance 802.11ac Wave 1 certification efforts so it is an unknown if it will work? There is a Twitter thread on this topic here: https://twitter.com/80211Alan/status/415127891387899904.

 

Based on what I could find online, it appears the client side 802.11ac device would have to support the following functionality for MU-MIMO support:

 

Chapter 4. Beamforming in 802.11ac

http://chimera.labs.oreilly.com/books/1234000001739/ch04.html

"Because 802.11ac beamforming is based on explicit channel measurements, both the transmitter and the receiver must support it."

 

Thanks!

 

---

 

802.11ac In-Depth: Statement of Wi-Fi Alliance Certification Wave 1 / Wave 2

PDF Page 45:

"The Wi-Fi Alliance is under-reported in this paper because its work takes place a little later than the IEEE, selecting
parts of the standard and developing from them an interoperability certification.

 

But it plays a crucial role, as developers will build equipment to the eventual Wi-Fi Alliance certification rather than 

the IEEE standard. In the same way as 802.11n certification rolled out in two phases, 802.11ac will generate at least
two Wi-Fi Alliance certifications over time."

 

802.11ac In-Depth

http://www.arubanetworks.com/pdf/technology/whitepapers/WP_80211acInDepth.pdf

 

Aruba Employee
Posts: 19
Registered: ‎03-22-2011

Re: Clarification on 802.11ac Wave 1 client side chipset support for MU-MIMO

We will check and get back to you...

Aruba Employee
Posts: 11
Registered: ‎12-31-2010

Re: Clarification on 802.11ac Wave 1 client side chipset support for MU-MIMO

Per our Product Team, the currently shipping 802.11ac hardware will not support MU-MIMO. The chipset solution in our 11ac APs does not contain the logic/circuitry necessary to support MU MIMO.

 

This is the case for all solutions from all vendors in the Wi-Fi industry.

 

New hardware based on wave 2 chipsets will be developed as they become available.

 

Regards,

Riyaz

 

[Please hit Kudos if my reply answers]

New Contributor
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎01-17-2014

Re: Clarification on 802.11ac Wave 1 client side chipset support for MU-MIMO

My question is on the 802.11ac client side, not the AP side.

Do currently shipping Wi-Fi certified 802.11ac clients have the capability to interoperate with MU-MIMO once the AP hardware is upgraded to 802.11ac Wave 2?
Aruba Employee
Posts: 11
Registered: ‎12-31-2010

Re: Clarification on 802.11ac Wave 1 client side chipset support for MU-MIMO

Acknowledged that.  As per discussion with Broadcom so far, existing client devices will not support MU MIMO.

 

Regards,

Riyaz

 

[Hit Kudos if you like my reply]

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