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10 reasons to upgrade to 802.11n Wi-Fi

Why the time is right to boost your wireless

Not convinced that superfast 802.11n Wi-Fi is for you? Allow us to persuade you.

1. Speed: 802.11n promises the fastest wireless networking yet. Figures are somewhat vague, with speeds of 270 to 300 megabits per second (Mbps) commonly quoted.

Most draft-n products typically offer 300Mbps with OFDM, a 2_2 (two receiving and two transmitting streams) configuration and a 40MHz channel width. Real-world throughput will be less – perhaps 75Mbps.

2. Range: You can expect a greatly improved broadcast range with 802.11n. It's tricky to predict the true range of Wi-Fi, but in free air you might get a range of 100ft with 54Mbps 802.11g; this will increase up to 300ft with 802.11n, in theory. In practice, expect a doubling of range indoors, good enough even for the largest of houses.

3. Security: Draft-n devices are the most secure wireless products available – they use Wi-Fi Protected Access 2 (WPA 2).

The original WPA didn't feature all the elements of the 802.11i security standard, but WPA 2 does. In addition to TKIP and the 'Michael' encryption algorithms, 802.11n introduces a new Advanced Encryption Standard (AES)-based algorithm, CCMP, which is considered fully secure.

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