History of Wireless Local Area Network

Wireless technology is a general term that is usually used for mobile information technology equipments. It includes technological apparatus such as cellular telephones, personal digital assistants and wireless networking. GPS units, garage door openers, wireless computer mouse and keyboards, satellite television and cordless telephones are also included as those equipments using the wireless technology. Wireless Local Are Network is the connection of two or more computers witoout the use of wires or cables.

The Wireless LAN is using the spread-spectrum (802. 11a) modulation technology. This is based radio waves wherein communication is facilitated between the devices and the work stations in a limited area. The radio wave is also called the BSS or the basic server set. Mobility is given to the network users to move around a wide coverage but still can receive connections from a network. History of Wireless Local Area Network Norman Abramson of the University of Hawaii was the first one to develop the world’s first computer communication network.

This was in 1970 wherein he had used the low-cost ha-like radio which is called the ALOHAnet. The computer network had utilized a bi-direction star topology. The topology had included seven computers which were distributed over four island while the central computer was on the Oahu Island. This was successfully implemented without the use of telephone lines.

Several years later, after the development of the first computer network, in 1979, F. R. Gfeller and U. BApst were able to make a publication in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers about the experimental local area network which had utilized the dispersed infrared communications. In 1980, another publication was made by P. Ferrer which tackled on the experiment done which used a single code spread spectrum radio for wireless terminal communications. Several experiments were reported such as the ISM bands for commercial applications of the spread spectrum technology and wireless PBX system using code division multiple accesses.

These experiments had pushed activities of the industry which led in the development of the new generation of wireless local area networks. Updates were done in the portable and radio industry. In the early 1980’s, the advancement of wireless data modems was developed by recreational communications groups. By the help of the short distance radio system, they were able to develop the wireless data modems. They have added voice band data communication to the short distance radio system. The data rates used was 9600bits.

The short distance radio systems used were the walkie talkie. After announcements of experimental bands, the next generation of wireless modems emerged. These experimental bands are made up of non-military utilization of the technology called the spread spectrum. This time, the data rates used hundreds of k/bits. The next generation of wireless modem had an objective that the development of the wireless modem should be compatible with the existing wireless local area network with data rates on order of Mbit/s (Pahlavan, 1991).

The appearance of the wireless local area network products in the market had also commenced the first Institute of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers workshops on wireless local area network in 1991. After many years of studies and evaluation of several alternatives to wireless LAN, in 1996, there were various applications for the wireless LAN. The applications were then accepted and fully understood by the market. Products like chip sets and other wireless LAN implementations had been rapidly adopted in the market.

Various uses of the wireless LANs were utilized by several institutions. Hospitals and some stock exchanges offices had been able to use wireless LAN utilizing its benefits. Other applications of Wireless LAN such ad-hoc networking and others had rapidly emerged in the market.. New opportunities from the IEEE 802. 11 standards and variants like interoperability forums of wireless LANs and the specifications of the European HIPERLAN were presented (Worcester Polytechnic University, 2006).

The first breakthrough of wireless LAN was witnesses on July 21, 1999 when AirPort introduced at the Macworld Expo in New York the iBook. The iBook was supposed to give the cameraman a better shot of Steve Jobs while surfing the net. There was a great applause form the audience when they knew that there were no wires attached on the iBook. This had made the market triggered to even make wireless local area network a home use. It has been a great opportunity for the common people to have one of the wireless LANs since it was the now cheaper compared to the time before Airport had released the iBook.

During the early 1990’s, wireless LANs were so expensive that only large corporate settings can afford to have one. At the end of the decade, the early industry-specific solutions and protocols were changed by standards such as the different version of the IEEE 802. 11 (Wi-Fi). The alternative that was presented in the market in the form of the ATM like 5 GHz standardized technology had not been able to reap success in the market. The release of the products similar to the HIPERLAN which are the 54Mbit/s 802. 11a and 802. 11g had not also succeeded in the market.