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2676 posts

Uber Geek


#196779 12-Jun-2016 13:49
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Kickstarter currently has a project for the "Portal", a router advertising "turbocharged" wifi.


If I'm reading it right, I think it is just able to utilise some of the mid-range channels/frequencies in the 5Ghz range that you can only use if DFS (dynamic frequency selection) is used - channels 50 through 140-ish. Through some cleverness, the Portal can switch between these relatively under-used frequencies. According to the FAQ, "Even the most expensive enterprise-class routers are only able to provide access to ONE channel that can be shared with radar", whereas "Portal is able to provide access to ALL of the channels that can be shared with radar. Channels are monitored for WiFi and LTE traffic, as well as radar, and can move back and forth to avoid radar and interference whenever necessary".


I'm curious as to (a) whether I've read this right and (b) whether you would need special hardware at the PC/tablet/phone/other client to make full use of this? Or do standard 5GHz cards include the ability to utilise such bits of the spectrum and it's just the routers that haven't been?


Any real world benefits in NZ? Certainly we've got no issues at our place in the 5Ghz (and even 2.4 isn't that bad).


It seems to be based on OpenWRT, so if it's clever software instead of hardware might feed back into the open source community.


I'm not a buyer/backer. Even if I wanted to play fun and games with freight forwarders (it only ships to North America) I'm well aware that RSM might come knocking if I'm using some funky non-certified device. Just curious as to how it works.

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29270 posts

Uber Geek

Biddle Corp
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  #1570477 12-Jun-2016 14:36
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Wow. People have given that much money to a project which seems to primarily consist of a DFS implementation on a consumer grade router.


Providing you're only using NZ approved frequencies in NZ there would be no issues using it in NZ because it's not doing anything unique - it's simply bringing features to a device you'd normally have to pay more for.







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Uber Geek


  #1570481 12-Jun-2016 14:43
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DFS is crap. If I use a DFS channel then it takes forever for the wifi to come up after restarting it, and it will decide to go away at inoppertune times. Like when I actually want to use it.



3467 posts

Uber Geek


  #1570766 12-Jun-2016 23:18
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To pass an FCC certification for DFS bands, the routers need to be super sensitive to radar (airports, weather - they are all over nz) and as a result, the DFS system can get false positives.


The router then has to scan for something like 2 minutes to confirm that the channel it wants to hop to is clear of any radar before it can transmit.


To be honest, the only situation this could be helpful is in a crowded apartment building, and in a situation like that, false positives will be common due to the over sensitivity required to pass the FCC certification.


You cant sell a radio product in the USA unless it has an FCC certification so I wouldnt expect it to come to market in most other countries unless they can get past that hurdle as many other countries will accept the FCC certification as equivalent to a local certification.

Ray Taylor
Taylor Broadband (rural hawkes bay)

There is no place like localhost
For my general guide to extending your wireless network Click Here

2314 posts

Uber Geek

  #1572280 15-Jun-2016 12:06
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Seven (7) Operating Bands

    Band I: 5.150 – 5.250 GHz (5G, UNII-1)
    Band II: 5.250 – 5.350 GHz (5G, UNII-2, DFS
    Band III - V: 5.470 – 5.725 GHz (5G, UNII-2e-i, ii and iii, DFS)
    Band VI: 5.725 – 5.825 GHz (5G, UNII-3)




If its using restricted NZ freqs (probably is), its dead in the water here (I cant be bothered checking)
Some 5.8 gear sold overseas simply isnt 'legal' in NZ : a good example is FPV gear . Last year RSM were watching trademe
and having auctions removed if they thought that the device might be just capable of using ANY restricted 5.8 freq.

228 posts

Master Geek

  #1572373 15-Jun-2016 13:28
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The manufacturer just needs to configure a country code for New Zealand with the correct frequency and EIRP settings.

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