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What is a wireless LAN?

Wireless LANs provide a way to connect to networks without the use of cables. They use radio frequencies in a deregulated range of radio spectrum (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz) in a specific way to provide this service.

The technical standards for wireless networking equipment are defined by the IEEE and fall within the 802.11 family of standards - these include 802.11a, 802.11g, 802.11n and 802.11ac. Recognising that equipment designed by different vendors according to a standard often does not interoperate however, an association was established to promote testing and interoperation of equipment from different suppliers. Equipment that has been through this process is known as 'Wi-Fi' (or 'Wireless Fidelity') compatible.