Draft 802.11n Devices Must Implement 802.11e QoS

It’s good to see that both the IEEE 802.11n draft Standard and the Wifi-Alliance certification program require that future draft 802.11n Wifi devices also have to support the 802.11e QoS standard, sometimes also referred to as Wireless Multimedia (WMM).

WMM introduces Quality of Service for the Wifi Air Interface which means certain traffic flows can be prioritized over others. This is important for example when high bandwidth streaming and several phone calls are to be carried over the same wireless access point simultaneously.

By requiring QoS support from 802.11n devices I think this functionality has a real chance to become widespread in a relatively short amount of time which would probably not have happened otherwise.


  • The 802.11n draft standard which confirms this in several paragraphs, like for example in a quite simple and not very easy to understand statement in chapter 5.2.8: "An HT STA is also a QoS STA"

For further information on WMM and how applications can use the functionality take a look at this previous blog entry.

2 thoughts on “Draft 802.11n Devices Must Implement 802.11e QoS”

  1. Note that there is a distinction between the full IEEE 802.11e spec and WiFi WMM, which is the 802.11e Baseline portion of the standard. I hadn’t noticed that 802.11n certification implied 802.11e Baseline (WMM) as well. I’ll poke around a little and try to get confirmation whether this is what we should expect from 11n clients and APs. Regardless of whether this is true, Windows Vista certified devices are guaranteed to properly implement WMM.

  2. Hi Gabe,

    Both The Draft 802.11n Standards document and material from the Wifi Alliance link 11e and 11n:

    “An HT STA is also a QoS STA”

    Wifi Association:
    “Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 802.11n draft 2.0 products will also have the Wi-Fi Alliance security and QoS certifications – WPA/WPA2 and WMM – bringing security and high performance to mission critical applications in the enterprise and to bandwidth hungry multimedia applications in the home.”


Comments are closed.