Wireless world record: Researchers transfer data at 100Gbps through the air

If only we could get 100Gbps in our homes...

One of the major obstacles for delivering faster Internet to the home is the sheer amount of work and money it takes to lay the cable. Now, researchers are coming up with a workaround that transmits the data wirelessly.

The latest effort, from researchers at Germany's Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, has set a new world record for wireless data transmission. They've managed to hit 100 gigabits per second while transmitting data over 20 meters, using a frequency of 237.5 GHz. A previous effort by the same group reached 40 Gbps over 1 kilometer.

"For rural areas in particular, this technology represents an inexpensive and flexible alternative to optical fiber networks, whose extension can often not be justified from an economic point of view," Professor Ingmar Kallfass said, according to TGDaily. With this technology, service providers could connect the gaps in their networks by pointing a laser (or "beam-focusing antenna") across two transmission towers.

TGDaily also notes that the researchers hit 100 Gbps using a single data stream. In the future, researchers could achieve even higher bandwidths through interweaving of multiple data streams and other techniques.

As exciting as it sounds, don't expect a big bump in home Internet speeds anytime soon. Even after this technology gets out of the lab, service providers would have to figure out how to integrate it, and telecoms companies such as AT&T have noted that signal attenuation and interference can be a problem when transmitting high-frequency data over long distances. There would likely be regulatory hurdles to deal with as well, as telecoms may eventually look to use spectrum beyond 300 GHz, which is currently unallocated in the United States.

But given how long it's taking for wired Internet providers to boost speeds in any significant way, perhaps wireless delivery has a chance to take over long before we all get our fiber-optic fix.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags NetworkingKarlsruhe Institute of Technology

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jared Newman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?