With the OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.4 beta release currently in the hands of developers, some of the more eagle-eyed nerds have noticed references to code that appear to confirm rumours about Apple’s plans to roll out super-fast Wi-Fi to its Macs. 9to5mac reports that devs have stumbled upon code in the OS’s Wi-Fi frameworks folder which explicitly references the 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard.
That reference is new and didn’t appear in OS X 10.8.3 — the latest public release of the operating system. Previous rumours suggested that Apple was working with Broadcom to offer the speedy — 1.3Gbps throughput with three antennas — 802.11ac Wi-Fi in its computers. This software reference goes some way to confirming that it’s at least a very strong possibility.
The 802.11ac standard is both faster and more robust than current Wi-Fi according to Broadcom, offering extended range and the ability “to watch HD-quality video from more devices, in more places, simultaneously”. Apple won’t be the first to use the standard — Asus released a gaming laptop with it last year — but it would be the first company to introduce what’s sometimes referred to as 5G Wi-Fi on a broad scale.
As for timing, well, that’s a tough call. MacBooks are due for a spec bump in the coming months, but it’s unclear if the tech is ready to roll out commercially yet. Let’s wait and see. [9to5mac]