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The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) has approved a new official standard for wireless (Wi-Fi) networking.

The 802.11n specification has been developed over seven years and the new kit should theoretically be able to deliver networking speeds of up to 300Mb, but could hit 1000Mb-plus in the future, according to the IEEE.

Its previous incarnation, the 802.11g standard, was only capable of delivering speeds up to 54Mb.

Bruce Kraemer, chair of the IEEE Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) Working Group, said it was an "extraordinarily wide-ranging technical challenge that required the sustained effort and concentration of a terrific variety of participants".

He added: "The performance improvements achieved via IEEE 802.11n stand to transform the WLAN user experience, and ratification of the amendment sets the stage for a new wave of application innovation and creation of new market opportunities."

Laptops featuring the draft 802.11n technology have been available for some years and it is believed many of these devices will be compatible with the new official standard.

Freerunner recently announced it was looking to offer free Wi-Fi broadband in 50 rural communities across the UK.

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