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Broadcom's new WiFi chips aim to keep your video streams flowing


All that hardware strewn throughout your crib is only as good as the sum of its parts. Broadcom is one of the firms bent on evolving those parts, and today at CES the company's introducing two new chips that'll pervade the tech of 2014 (even though you likely won't know it). First up is the BCM43569 (2x2 MIMO), which blends 5G WiFi, aka 802.11ac, and Bluetooth 4.1 standards with a USB 3.0 interface. The combo SoC is intended for the next generation of smart TVs and set-top boxes, allowing simultaneous WiFi/BT connections to other devices and ensuring solid video-streaming performance in your airwave-saturated home.

The BCM43602 (3x3 MIMO) 5G WiFi chip, which instead uses a PCI Express interface, is destined for future routers and set-top boxes. It, too, is slated to improve the reliability of video streaming over 802.11ac by assuming the brunt of wireless processing work usually executed by those products' internal CPUs. Both new chips also support beamforming for maintaining stronger connections, and are available for OEMs to play with right now.

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