The Ruckus Wireless Room is an above average PR effort by my old buddies Selina Lo (we worked together at N.E.T before she became very rich and famous) and David Callisch (ex-Stratacom, ex-Cisco) .
This Ruckus PR blog article caught my eye. It’s an interesting argument. But my hunch is the virtues of high volume will make Airgo a big winner. That doesn’t mean Ruckus can not also succeed.
[tease] (edited for brevity)
Why Airgo is Beneath Us…Literally
Airgo makes chips that split Wi-Fi traffic into multiple streams for simultaneous transmissions, (part of the new MIMO technologies on which the future Wi-Fi standard, 802.11n, is based). This technology gives you a bigger pipe, although the actual bandwidth still fluctuates from moment to moment, just like good old 802.11b/g/a. This approach is also more expensive, as it requires more complex RF silicon on both ends.
We don’t make chips. Repeat: we are NOT a semi-conductor company! We design complete systems for robust transmission of multimedia traffic over Wi-Fi. Our technology intelligently steers Wi-Fi signals away from interference, motion and obstructions in real time to preserve signal strength and stability. This is particularly important for finicky applications such as real time video streaming.
We are constantly compared to MIMO vendors because we use MIMO diversity techniques to do the signal steering, not with new silicon but with our physical antenna and our very smart control software. We do not implement proprietary multiplexing schemes to transmit packets in parallel. Thus you don’t get a bigger pipe; you just get more and better bandwidth from the standard 54Mbps pipe.
Also, because our smart antenna system has better steering, traction and all that stuff, we don’t need a big arse engine to go far. Our transmission system is agile enough to navigate the RF obstacle course to reach all the nooks and crannies throughout the home.
Our technology uses any (and we mean any) commodity, standards-based Wi-Fi chipset, to deliver what chip vendors gunning after highest throughput numbers can’t: whole-house coverage and a steady, reliable link (look closely at the recent MIMO review in Tom’s Networking where we got lumped with all the other MIMO guys).
A stable Wi-Fi link, in our opinion, is only a foundation on which to build the priority queuing to allow a single network to service voice, broadcast quality video and data in the home. Some Wi-Fi vendors would have you think that the 802.11e QoS standard will make wireless multimedia a breeze but in reality, it is just not enough. It does not regulate how Wi-Fi devices classify traffic to the various priority levels, nor does it make any specifications on how to direct the traffic queues.
Our systems can inspect traffic packets and differentiate them by applications, jitter and loss characteristics and prioritize transmissions to prevent your kid’s online gaming session, for example, from destroying your IPTV experience.