Belkin Pre-N Performance

Wi-Fi Networking News reports on a review by PC World that contains some performance numbers from the Belkin Pre-N wireless solution (the one with the Airgo Networks chipset in it). While PC World and Wi-Fi Networking News seem to be impressed by the 40 Mbps actual throughput from the Belkin solution (router + cardbus card), I was disappointed.

I have seen similar performance numbers with Atheros’ Super AG (some even better), so I was expecting to see much better (around 80 Mbps say) from the MIMO solution. If they are to reach the 100 Mbps actual throughput that is the goal for 802,11n, then I’d say they have a bit more work to do. Both Atheros and Broadcom have range extending technology too (Atheros has XR, and just recently Broadcom added BroadRange).

It would have been more interesting to see a side-by-side comparison of all four proprietary speed enhancing technologies: Connexant’s Nitro, Atheros’ SuperAG, Broadcom’s Afterburner (a.k.a. Linksys SpeedBooster) and the Belkin Pre-N. I think that since Pre-N is so far ahead of the actual 802.11n standard that for the moment it really has to be seen as another proprietary solution. There will probably be elements of all of these speed & range enhancing techniques in the final standard.

Also interesting would be a comparison of the range extenders (Atheros’ XR, Broadcom’s BroadRange and Belkin’s Pre-N) to see how they really stack up in the same environment using the same test.

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