[CES 2012] Buffalo Technology is demonstrating 802.11ac or WiFi AC, the next-generation WiFi standard that is designed to push WiFi beyond 1Gbps (1000Mbps), and provide for higher range at the same time. Buffalo is a Japanese company with a history of being edgy when it comes to using the latest technical developments. For example, the company introduced the first Wireless router in 1999 and was the first to put WiFi-N and USB 3.0 on the market.At CES 2012, no actual product is presented, but Buffalo wants to show that its WiFi AC already works, and of course, Buffalo pushed the envelope a bit further by pushing the maximum throughput of their prototype to about 1.7Gbps by using the 5GHz and the 2.4GHz spectrums at the same time to transport data at 1300Mbps and 450Mbps respectively. In terms of “real-world” performance, Buffalo expects to see something along 600Mbps, which is tremendously higher than WiFi N.
Unfortunately, no WiFi AC product will be available for a while, and we estimate that the last quarter of 2012 is when the first consumer devices will start appearing. In short, WiFi AC builds on the WiFi legacy and it is backwards-compatible and better in every single way at the same time.