IMS eyes 400 million 802.11ac devices by 2016

IMS Research came out with a bullish outlook this week for the burgeoning market for 802.11ac Wi-Fi devices. The U.K.-based firm said more than 3 million devices with 802.11ac connectivity will ship this year, on the way to 400 million such devices by 2016.

To anyone who was at, or read up on, last week's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the positive vibes will come as no surprise. At an event that some complained lacked a new truly knock-out consumer electronics device, it seemed like it was 802.11ac that arguably stole the show.

The technology offers 1.3 Gbps and wider channels at 5 Ghz on the spectrum chart. The Wi-Fi Alliance is still working on creating a certification program for new products, most of which are expected to come out late in 2012. That doesn't leave 802.11ac a whole lot of time to reach 3 million shipments for the year, but IMS Research indicates the technology will be so aggressively pushed into new devices that it could quickly overtake shipments of 802.11n.

But, according to IMS Research, one device type that won't include 802.11ac, at least for now, is the smartphone. The technology potentially could be too costly for smartphones in the early going, though the research firm said that will eventually change.

For more:
- check out this PC Mag story

Related articles:
Broadcom is also bullish on 802.11ac
CES was 802.11ac's coming-out party

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