Wireless 'Traffic Cop' Created for Networks

Guest_Jim_* - November 15, 2012 07:50AM in Science & Technology

One of the wonderful things about wireless networks is how one can serve a large number of people. Generally they will not serve a large group well, as multiple users will be on one channel, but researchers at North Carolina State University have found a solution to that.

The reason the network slows down when there are multiple users on a single channel is that only one device can be transmitting at a time. If multiple devices were transmitting, the signals would interfere with each other. The researchers' solution was to essentially create a traffic cop for the network. Called WiFox, this software solution will intelligently prioritize the access point's transmissions when a backlog of data grows. When the researchers tested this with 25 to 45 users on a single network, the software increased speeds by 400% to 700% compared to a network without WiFox. Also, that increase scales with the number of users, so when there were 45 people on the WiFox network, it was going seven times faster than on a regular network, while at 35 users, it was only four times faster.

As this is a software solution, it is possible for WiFox to be rolled out in software packages to wireless networks, independent of hardware.