The Wi-Fi Alliance announced Wi-Fi Certified WiGig Mon, a new certification program aimed to enable high-speed connectivity for data-intensive users. Designed for products based on the 802.11ad standard, the program is expected to bring multi-vendor interoperability to expand WiGig devices, which operate in the 60 GHz spectrum. The band complements existing WiFi services operating in the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz band. With multi-gigabit capability, the band allows for services such as wireless docking, augmented reality/virtual reality, simultaneous streaming of multiple Ultra HD/4K videos, gaming and networking applications. Cable operators will benefit from WiGig because “they can utilize 60 GHz to provide extremely high-performance, multi-gigabit connectivity with low latency to home users,” Wi-Fi Alliance pres/CEO Edgar Figueroa told us. Cable ops can also use WiGig as an alternative to fiber to provide a cost-effective, wireless solution to address the “last-mile” problem that exists in wireless deployments, he said. For example, MSOs, using WiGig technology, can provide “extremely high bandwidth between the utility pole and the home or the utility pole and neighborhood hotspots,” the exec said. With wider channels, devices can reach data rates of up to 8 Gbps, meaning users can download an HD movie in a few seconds. “This level of performance is critical to delivering a wired-grade experience for a variety of in-room and outdoor line-of-sight scenarios,” Wi-Fi Alliance said. It predicts that WiGig devices will range from smartphones, portable PCs, tablets, and access points, to home entertainment and consumer electronics devices. ABI Research forecasts 180mln WiGig chipsets will ship to the smartphone market in 2017, with smartphone chipsets accounting for almost half of the 1.5 billion total market shipments in 2021. Since WiGig is expected to ship in volume this year, it is considered the only technology that will deliver on envisioned 5G millimeter wave use cases today, said Edgar. The millimeter wave spectrum (the band of spectrum between 30 GHz and 300 GHz) is being considered by standard groups and the FCC as the way to offer 5G wireless technology, which can deliver multi-gigabit speeds. Apparently Facebook already has its eyes on WiGig. The company is currently using WiGig technology for its Terragraph initiative, which is focused on bringing high-speed Internet connectivity to dense urban areas. Terragraph’s wireless system consists of radios that are based on the WiGig standard and are designed for consumer electronics, which lets Facebook create nodes that are inexpensive relative to traditional telecom infrastructure, the company said. “Combined with Wi-Fi access points, Terragraph is one of the lowest cost solutions to achieve 100 percent street-level coverage of gigabit Wi-Fi,” Facebook said. In 2017, Wi-Fi Alliance is set to introduce new technologies to support indoor/outdoor location, as well as providing a better experience in managed networks for improved user experience in service provider networks, Edgar said.