Broadcom announces world's first Wi-Fi 6E chip2020-02-13 18:17 by Daniela
Today, Broadcom announced the availability of a new phone-targeted Wi-Fi chipset, the BCM4389. The new chipset offers support for Wi-Fi 6 and—more interestingly—Wi-Fi 6E.
Broadcom is claiming its 6E chip for mobile devices is capable of doubling Wi-Fi speeds while cutting latency in half (compared to Wi-Fi 5). 6E also offers wider 160Mhz channels and speeds of up to 2Gbps, whereas Wi-Fi 6 is limited to 80MHz channels and 1Gbps speeds. In real terms, Broadcom views 6E as improving or unlocking access to mobile AR and VR, ultra high-definition video streaming, in-vehicle entertainment, and high-speed tethering between different devices.
Тhe BCM4389 features three radios - one with support for two Wi-Fi 6E streams, another with support for Bluetooth 5, and a third ultra-low-power radio designed to optimize the performance of the first two by scanning for optimal networks and assisting with location accuracy.
While the chip's peak physical layer rate is 2.63Gbps, the practical number will be closer to 2Gbps, aided by ultra-dense 1024-QAM encoding, OFDMA, and a MU-MIMO antenna system. The company says the chip's tri-band simultaneous connectivity architecture is responsible for the up to 5 times improvement in battery utilization, which presumably comes from making more efficient use of available channels and won't be seen under all scenarios.
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