Wisair plans wireless USB dongles

March 3, 2009 // 10:03 a.m.

Tags: #cebit #certification #fujitsu #olidata #usb #usb-20 #usb-30 #usb-if #usb-implementers-forum #wireless-usb #wisair #wsr601

If you've been wondering just what happened to the wireless USB technology that was going to revolutionise all our lives a few years back, talk to Wisair: the company is helping Fujitsu and Olidata show off some neat wire-free devices at CeBIT.

According to I4U, the devices the two companies will be unveiling are set to use Wisair's WSR601 single-chip USB-over-wireless technology, which promises full USB2.0 speed without the wires. This does mean, however, that any devices using the tech have to be self-powered as sending electricity over even short distances without wiring is a trifle problematic, Tesla's research notwithstanding.

Fujitsu and Olidata's first forays into the world of wireless USB are expected to come in the form of USB converter dongles, which Wisair claims will allow “existing wired USB devices – such as hard disk drives, printers, digital still cameras, camcorders and CD/DVD – into Wireless USB devices.” Although the company has been a bit coy on technical specs for its particular implementation of wireless USB, the company does claim that the range will be good enough to avoid “the limitations of USB cable length” although doesn't go so far as claiming they will work outside of the same room as the host PC.

This isn't the first time we've been promised working, affordable wireless USB: way back in 2005 we were promised devices “as soon as year end.” Despite the news in 2007 – rather later than planned – that six products had received official Wireless USB certification from the USB-IF board, the technology is still something people are unlikely to encounter in the wild. Perhaps this time the standard might actually take off – just in time to be outmoded by USB 3.0.

Do you think that wireless USB is still holds promise, or is the lack of power provision a major killer for the standard? Share your thoughts over in the forums.
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