OS X 1084 beta suggests Gigabit 80211ac WiFi is coming soon

9to5Mac on Tuesday reported that data strings found within the recently released developer seed of OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.4 suggest that upcoming Macs may feature ultra-fast 802.11ac Wi-Fi.

Indeed, news of Apple’s interest in 802.11ac Wi-Fi isn’t new.

You might remember that Apple, back in early January, purportedly struck a deal with Broadcom wherein the chip maker agreed to provide Apple with the 802.11ac networking chipset, thus enabling future Macs to take advantage of insanely fast wireless speeds.

And just how fast are we talking here?

Well, 802.11ac, which is often referred to as 5G Wi-Fi, can deliver speeds as fast as 1.3 Gigabits per second.

To put that into context, Apple’s current lineup of Macs utilize the 802.11n networking standard which can reach data speeds of 450Mbps with three antennas, something the 802.11ac chipset can achieve with just one.

Back in January, we reported:

To provide lightning-fast wireless networking, 802.11ac uses up to four times the frequency bandwidth (up to 160 MHz), more antennas (up to eight; existing Macs use up to three), and hyper-efficient data transfers through more sophisticated modulation schemes.

Notably, the 802.11ac chipset offers much more than just speed. In addition to being more reliable, Broadcom boasts that it’s up to 6 times as power efficient as previous generation chipsets and is also capable of providing wider coverage.

Code in OS X 10.8.4 beta suggests upcoming Macs will feature Gigabit 802.11ac Wi-Fi originally appeared on TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog on Wed, 10 Apr 2013 07:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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