Handheld WiFi?

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
49,639
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Agere Systems announced a "mini-module" providing 802.11g (WiFi) for handheld consumer electronic devices.

Thisembedded system-in-package (SiP) delivers 54 megabit-per-second (Mbit/s) speeds while balancing exceptional range and power savings for such wireless products as personal digital assistants (PDAs), media players, Smartphones, handheld video game devices, and digital cameras and camcorders.
The module measures only 20x29 millimeters and offers 100 meters of wireless connectivity coupled with low power consumption.

This technology could potentially be used by Apple to incorporate WiFi connectivity in future handheld devices such as the iPod.

Of related interest, recent specs for Wireless Firewire was also introduced in May, with more recent whispers that Apple is already looking into implementing this technology in future hardware.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
24,428
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Sweet, I guess.

I really don't know how they would charge the iPod over FW if it worked wirelessly.

And now they can save space inside of laptops by using this new, small WiFi instead?
 

Windowlicker

macrumors 6502a
Feb 17, 2003
713
1
Finland
it sounds useful, but what could it actually be used for and what would it actually do? a wireless ipod? it'd still need a power cable.. wifi home entertainment system? it wouldn't need all this handheld stuff on it..

i'm confused, please do enlighten me.
 

Hattig

macrumors 65816
Jan 3, 2003
1,444
78
London, UK
Windowlicker said:
it sounds useful, but what could it actually be used for and what would it actually do? a wireless ipod? it'd still need a power cable.. wifi home entertainment system? it wouldn't need all this handheld stuff on it..

i'm confused, please do enlighten me.
Well Wireless sync would be quite neat, you wouldn't have to do that extremely arduous task of plugging in the cable ... except for power anyway. Oh, wait.

It would be handy if your music collection was larger than the capacity of the iPod and you couldn't be bothered to go upstairs to sync. Of course, this would need some "browse available music" facility on the iPod itself where you could choose music to sync onto the iPod via wireless on the iPod itself.

I expect in the end it will be used on some other device, not the iPod.
 

richard5mith

macrumors regular
Jun 4, 2002
104
0
That and it's specifically low power. Compact flash wifi modules and built in wifi for existing Pocket PC/other devices do tend to suck up the juice big time.

This module sounds exactly like the kind of thing Nintendo are putting in the DS and Sony in the PSP.
 

neonart

macrumors 65816
Sep 4, 2002
1,065
30
Near a Mac since 1993.
802.11g is still nowhere near the iPod Firewire transfer rates. It will be ok for contacts and getting one or two songs- but try to move GB's and you'll be there a while!
 

syco

macrumors member
Jul 31, 2002
69
0
To get off the Mac topic, perhaps Nintendo might be using this for the DS.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Dec 27, 2002
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So will this help Apple save space inside of laptops or what? If not, then I still don't see the usefulness of this unless Apple makes a Palm handheld, or maybe an OS X handheld. Either way, an iPod is going to need to be able to view the songs on your computer if song transfer is going to be possible, like some else mentioned already, so its useless for iPods.

How about streaming video to a television? To a computer?

(or what if it happens to be a technology announcement that isn't relevent to Apple products at all. This probably happens a lot. They can't use every technology, y'know!)
 

nathanziarek

macrumors newbie
Oct 13, 2003
12
0
how aobut no more HD?

The Cheat said:
iPod + WiFi = pointless
Well, maybe, maybe not. I don't know much about WiFi in the technical sense, but imagine this: What if the iPod no longer had a hard drive in it, or at least there was a version without one. The thing could just stream your music using Your entire iTunes Library. Now, to me WiFi is limited, but what if it was a wireless card that connected to the cell towers, giving you an _almost_ constant access to your home computer's music. It wouldn't work for everyone - we've all lost a cell phone signal - but as the technology gets better, this could be a serious implementation. Plus, think about how cheap and slim an iPod without a hard drive could be.

Just another quick thought, how 'bout WiFi headphones :) Everyone is always talking about BT headphones with its extremely limited bandwidth. 802.11g has plenty of bandwidth for a measly uncompressed song...

Just throwing it out there :)

nate
 

baby duck monge

macrumors 68000
Feb 16, 2003
1,570
0
Memphis, TN
neonart said:
802.11g is still nowhere near the iPod Firewire transfer rates. It will be ok for contacts and getting one or two songs- but try to move GB's and you'll be there a while!
this is where the FireWireless comes into play. no need to transfer at airport speeds when you can transfer wirelessly more on par with firewire.
 

whooleytoo

macrumors 604
Aug 2, 2002
6,574
657
Cork, Ireland.
Windowlicker said:
it sounds useful, but what could it actually be used for and what would it actually do? a wireless ipod? it'd still need a power cable.. wifi home entertainment system? it wouldn't need all this handheld stuff on it..

i'm confused, please do enlighten me.
There are various possibilities. Auto-syncing with your Mac/PC's iTunes when you come within range, without needing to carry or plug in a cable. Wireless home entertainment, where the iPod acts as portable storage, for a system like Roku's Soundbridge. Wireless remote control would be another.
 

frem001

macrumors newbie
Mar 8, 2004
19
0
London
Abstract said:
So will this help Apple save space inside of laptops or what? If not, then I still don't see the usefulness of this unless Apple makes a Palm handheld, or maybe an OS X handheld. Either way, an iPod is going to need to be able to view the songs on your computer if song transfer is going to be possible, like some else mentioned already, so its useless for iPods.

How about streaming video to a television? To a computer?

(or what if it happens to be a technology announcement that isn't relevent to Apple products at all. This probably happens a lot. They can't use every technology, y'know!)
Go to http://www.oqo.com this is what Apple needs to do. This device was made by a couple of ex-employees from Apple and IBM. Looks like an Apple design. shame about the crappy os :D
 

newbie17

macrumors newbie
Jan 15, 2004
6
0
Maybe I don't get it-- but wouldn't the point of wifi in an ipod be to download music from the itunes music store without a computer? Is the software (maybe with the home on ipod stuff) able to do that? Buying music at an internet cafe with no computer would be cool.
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
38,211
4,624
Los Angeles
broken_keyboard said:
When you stand next to another iPod user, their playlist appears on your iPod. Just like iTunes finds other iTunes using Rendevous, iPod finds other iPod.
What a great idea. Of course, if that works, then you could buy five 40GB iPods, wear them all around your waist, with only one plugged into your ears, and listen to 200GB of music!
 

dongmin

macrumors 68000
Jan 3, 2002
1,708
0
baby duck monge said:
this is where the FireWireless comes into play. no need to transfer at airport speeds when you can transfer wirelessly more on par with firewire.
uh, no. Those are two different things. FW is 400 Mbps and up. This is 54 Mbps. 802.11g is not gonna magically give you more bandwidth by mixing the standards.
 

dho

macrumors 6502
Sep 7, 2003
279
0
California
neonart said:
802.11g is still nowhere near the iPod Firewire transfer rates. It will be ok for contacts and getting one or two songs- but try to move GB's and you'll be there a while!
You can leave that part up to the wireless firewire :)

Maybe this could be used to acquire the content that would be streamed to a tv.

Internet > Basestation > iPod > tv

Yeah that idea needs some work, but it would be cool
 
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