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802.11ac For Dummies

802.11ac is three times faster than 802.11n adapters to support a much richer experience. The three times faster speeds, more capacity, and broader coverage of 802.11ac translates to faster downloads, smoother, richer streaming video, and gaming experiences on more devices. Less time waiting means more time enjoying. More capacity means more cloud services on more devices in more places simultaneously for today’s multiple device households.

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How to Be Smart About Your Wi-Fi Choice

Streams

802.11ac Wi-Fi supports multiple radios and antennas that can transmit and receive multiple data streams. In Wi-Fi vernacular, these configurations are noted as 1x1, 2x2, and so on. More antennas and data streams mean faster speeds, fewer dead zones, fewer dropped connections, and better coverage. You save time, view smoother HD videos, and roam more freely with fewer interruptions. A 2x2 802.11ac adapter reaches a maximum data rate of up to 867 Mbps—three times faster than 802.11n.

Dual band

Dual band uses both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi frequencies. 5 GHz delivers five times the capacity of the legacy 2.4 GHz with less congestion and interference. The 2.4 GHz frequency is a crowded space with limited capacity and subject to interference from all kinds of other wireless devices. Dual band 802.11ac Wi-Fi adapters let you take advantage of 5 GHz capabilities while enabling you to connect to legacy 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi hotspots when needed.

Throughput

Wireless networks don’t perform anywhere near their raw “theoretical” maximum data rates. They are affected by all kinds of things—network overhead, user congestion, distance, obstacles, and interference. Think throughput when considering a Wi-Fi product. Network overhead alone takes 30 percent to 50 percent of available bandwidth—but wait, there's more. Wi-Fi networks are shared. The more users at a Wi-Fi hotspot, the more traffic they generate, the slower the speed for everyone.

Choose Your Wi-Fi for Today and Tomorrow’s Connected Life

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Product and Performance Information

1

Based on the theoretical maximum bandwidth enabled by 1x1 802.11n implementations with 1 spatial stream. Actual wireless throughput and/or range will vary depending on your specific operating system, hardware, and software configurations. Check with your PC manufacturer for details.

2

Compared to Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260.

3

InstantGo* is a Microsoft Windows* operating system feature in 8.1 (known as Connected Standby in Microsoft Windows 8 and Microsoft Windows RT).

4

Intel® Wireless Display requires an Intel Wireless Display-enabled PC, tablet, or smartphone, a compatible adapter, and a TV. 1080p and Blu-ray* or other protected content playback only available on select Intel® processors with built-in visuals enabled. Consult your PC manufacturer. For more information, see http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/architecture-and-technology/intel-wireless-display.html.

5

Intel® WiFi Hotspot Assistant requires an Intel® wireless adapter, Intel® PROSet/Wireless WiFi Software v. 15.6 or later, and an Internet connection for initial setup with the Easy WiFi* network.

6

When Wi-Fi Alliance Passpoint* is available.

7

Intel® vPro™ technology is sophisticated and requires setup and activation. Availability of features and results will depend upon the setup and configuration of your hardware, software, and IT environments. To learn more visit: www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/architecture-and-technology/vpro/vpro-technology-general.html

8

Intel® Active Management Technology (Intel® AMT) requires activation and a system with a corporate network connection, an Intel® AMT-enabled chipset, network hardware and software. For notebooks, Intel AMT may be unavailable or limited over a host OS-based VPN, when connecting wirelessly, on battery power, sleeping, hibernating or powered off. Results dependent upon hardware, setup & configuration. For more information, visit www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/architecture-and-technology/intel-active-management-technology.html.

9

Software and workloads used in performance tests may have been optimized for performance only on Intel® microprocessors. Performance tests, such as SYSmark and MobileMark, are measured using specific computer systems, components, software, operations, and functions. Any change to any of those factors may cause the results to vary. You should consult other information and performance tests to assist you in fully evaluating your contemplated purchases, including the performance of that product when combined with other products.

10

No license, express or implied, by estoppel or otherwise, to any intellectual property rights is granted by this document. Except as provided in Intel’s Terms and Conditions of Sale for such products, Intel assumes no liability whatsoever, and Intel disclaims any express or implied warranty relating to sale and/or use of Intel products including, without limitation, liability or warranties relating to fitness for a particular purpose, merchantability, or infringement of any patent, copyright, or other intellectual property right. Intel products are not intended for use in medical, lifesaving, or life-sustaining applications. Intel may make changes to specifications and product descriptions at any time, without notice. For the most current product information, please visit: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/wireless-network/wireless-products.html.