While some companies are busy exploring other options
for bringing wireless connectivity to rural areas, Intel's apparently been hard at work pushing plain old WiFi as far as they're able to, and they're reportedly now seeing some rather impressive results. According to Technology Review, the company's so-called "rural connectivity platform" (or RCP) is able to beam WiFi signals from one antenna to another located more than 60 miles away, and at data rates up to 6.5 megabits per second, no less. To do that, Intel whipped up some software that effectively rewrites the way the two radios communicate with one another, in particular by eliminating the extra data sent confirming transmissions. Of course, those high-powered antennas also come into play considerably, but Intel says the entire system is both inexpensive (it's aiming for below $500 when it starts selling it in India later this year) and low-power, with two or three radios in a link requiring just five or six watts.
[Via The Inquirer