Broadcom, a semiconductor company, has just announced its first Wi-Fi 802.11ac chip for smartphones. If you’re unaware, 802.11ac is the latest and greatest Wi-Fi standard that offers bandwidth and power consumption improvements over the current wireless standard (802.11n). Broadcom has said that Wireless 802.11ac can support gigabit speeds wirelessly, which will allow for lag free streaming on multiple devices on the same network. However, Broadcom’s first smartphone chip, the BCM 4335, will feature 433mbps raw speed (three times faster than wireless n) and will also have Bluetooth 4.0 and FM radio built in to the 802.11ac chip, making it perfect for all 2013-era smartphones.
Broadcom expects Wi-Fi 802.11ac to go mainstream in computers, tablets and smartphones in early 2013. Currently, Broadcom’s smartphone chip is still in “full sample phase”. Broadcom originally announced Wi-Fi 802.11ac chips at CES 2012, although they were primarily meant for routers like the Cisco EA65000, which will soon be available to the general public. However, at first most users won’t need to use Wi-Fi 802.11ac as they don’t need wireless speeds over 150mbps. However, if you do many file transfers over wireless LAN, you may find it useful to have the added speed when transferring large documents.