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MIMO makes a splash in 2006

Lisa Phifer offers her prognostications on what you can expect in the field of networking in 2006.

As 802.11 security improvements spur broad enterprise deployment, watch for WLAN administration, monitoring, trouble-shooting and quality of service to become bigger hot buttons in 2006.

VoIP over wireless will drive replacement of older, autonomous APs with new centrally-administered QoS-aware wireless switches.

Next generation MIMO gear will continue making a splash in residential WLANs, but enterprises will wait for clear industry convergence on a singular 802.11n technology. Meanwhile, wireless mesh networks will enjoy increased popularity in the great outdoors, serving as the foundation for many metropolitan area Wi-Fi deployments.

Finally, US carriers may dabble with dual mode 802.11-3G phones, but seamless roaming between wireless LAN and WAN will remain a distant vision.

Lisa Phifer owns Core Competence Inc., a consulting firm specializing in network security and management technology, and she also serves as SearchNetworking.com's wireless networking expert.

View Lisa's full bio, read some of her previously answered Q&As or send her your own wireless networking question.

This was last published in January 2006

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