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Notebook Computer Terms
Wi-Fi Wideless Fidelity or 802.11b transfers data wirelessly at a maximum rate of 11Mbps for up to 150 feet. It uses the 2.4GHz radio spectrum and although it says 11Mbps, you will probably only get around 4-6Mbps in actual use.
But this is enough bandwidth for high speed Internet, gaming and most file transfers.
The 802.11a is another standard that uses the 5GHz radio spectrum, so it has 8 channels available instead of only 3 that's available with 802.11b. The 'a' version also permits a larger transfer, at a maximum of 54Mbps.
The other standard, 802.11g, is a hybrid of 'A' and 'B' -- it's also capable of 54Mbps but it uses the 2.4 GHz spectrum and is compatible with 802.11b devices. Some notebooks like the Fujitsu LifeBook N6010, have a tri-mode 802.11a/b/g wireless system that uses all three forms. So too does the new IBM ThinkPad T43 with the Intel's next-generation Centrino Chipset (Sonoma Platform).
There is also a 802.11n on the horizon, it will operate at 125Mbit/sec.
Handy YouTube Video Explaining Wi-Fi:
The Notebook Guide
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