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Ultrafast wireless

New technology promises up to 480 mbps

If you're tired of cable clutter behind your PC, or behind that pricey giant-size plasma TV, feast your eyes upon Ultra Wide Band.

The next generation of high-speed wireless, UWB (also known as 802.15.3a) provides blistering transfer rates of up to 480 megabits per second.

Wi-Fi aficionados have nothing to worry about: UWB's highest rate works only within 3 feet. At 30 feet, throughput drops to about 110 mbps.

Nevertheless, UWB could become a building block of several new, limited-range standards such as Wireless USB and the next generation of Bluetooth.

Even though UWB is currently embroiled in an industry standards battle, backers hope to solve all legal and technical issues by year-end.

That would clear the way for early products such as set-top boxes that send signals to UWB-equipped TVs, and digital cameras that transmit images wirelessly and quickly.


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