Wireless USB

- a summary of the Wireless Universal Serial Bus ( W-USB )

The Wireless Universal Serial Bus (W-USB) is a new technology that is starting to enter widespread use. With USB now the most successful interface in PC history, and wireless communications becoming more widespread, it is almost certain that W-USB will achieve similar levels of success to USB. The interface is not only convenient to use, but it also offers high levels of performance. The same will be true for Wireless USB


Wireless USB offers a high level of performance, and will equal that of the current USB 2 wired connections. The initial target bandwidth is to achieve a data rate of 480 Mbps. However the standard has built in future proofing to allow for even high data rates to be achieved using later generations of the specification. It is anticipated that speeds of 1 Gbps or more should be possible.

The only transmission standard that will achieve the very high data rates required by wireless USB (W-USB) is Ultra Wide Band (UWB). This technology uses wideband impulse transmission techniques rather than the more traditional carrier based transmissions that are used everywhere else. In view of the wide bandwidths used, it is possible for these transmissions to carry huge levels of data, supporting high data rate streaming using isochronous transfers

It is intended that W-USB will be able to operate over distances of up to 10 metres. Additionally they will support cluster connectivity to the host and device-to-device connectivity.

Radio requirements

One of the major requirements placed upon the chip designers for the radio interface is that it should not consume much power. With typical PDAs using just 250 to 400 mW without their radio connection and mobile phones using between 200 and 300 mW, adding a Wireless USB ( W-USB) connection should not significantly increase the current consumption. Battery-powered operation requires reasonable battery life. This is normally between two and five days for highly mobile devices and several months for intermittently used devices like remote controls. The power target for WUSB radio will be introduced at less than 300 mW and reducing towards a target of 100 mW .

Device association

It is essential that any interconnection made using a Wireless USB (WUSB) connections should be easy to make. With user expectations set by the wired USB connections that are widely used and easy to connect, and wireless USB connection should be just as easy.

Making wireless connections is not always as easy. The wireless signal may establish connection paths that are not always obvious as a result of the environment and the overall conditions. It may not always be obvious when a device is connected. To overcome this, Wireless USB, WUSB, devices installed for the first time should automatically install drivers and security features to enable easy operation.

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