Windows Vista won't natively support Wireless USB, says Intel

Posted by Humphrey Cheung

Taipei (Taiwan) - New Wireless USB devices are coming, but will there be an operating system to welcome them? At the Certified Wireless USB Developers Conference, major hardware and software companies promised to start providing Certified Wireless USB devices by the end of the year. While this may sound hopeful, DigiTimes today cites Jeff Ravencraft, Intel's technology strategist, as saying Microsoft Vista will not natively support wireless USB devices.

A lack of native support would not be a death blow to Wireless USB, however, because device makers will probably release their own drivers. Microsoft, one of the big backers of Wireless USB, could also support the protocol in a future patch or Service Pack. This would parallel what happened with the Bluetooth support for Windows XP. Bluetooth wasn't natively support by Windows XP until Microsoft released Service Pack 1.

Certified Wireless USB is a short-ranged, high -bandwidth version of USB capable of sending 480 Mb/sec at distances up to 3 meters, and 110 MB/sec at up to 10 meters. It operates in the 3.1 to 4.7 GHz band and spreads communication over an ultra-wide band of frequencies.

The USB Implementers Forum also announced a Certified Wireless USB development kit which will be available next month. The kit will come with either a standard PCI card or a USB dongle.