Wireless Multimedia Extensions

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Wireless Multimedia Extensions (WME), also known as Wi-Fi Multimedia (WMM), is a Wi-Fi Alliance interoperability certification, based on the IEEE 802.11e standard. It provides basic Quality of service (QoS) features to IEEE 802.11 networks. WMM prioritizes traffic according to four Access Categories (AC) - voice, video, best effort, and background. However, it does not provide guaranteed throughput. It is suitable for well defined applications that require QoS, such as Voice over IP (VoIP) on Wi-Fi phones (VoWLAN).

WMM replaces the traditional Wi-Fi DCF distributed coordination function for traditional CSMA/CA wireless frame transmission with EDCF, Enhanced Distributed Coordination Function, which according to version 1.1 of the WMM specifications by the Wi-Fi Alliance, defines four Access Categories (AC_BK, AC_BE, AC_VI, AC_VO) labels, for the EDCA Enhanced Distributed Channel Access parameters that are used by a WMM-enabled station to control how long it shall set its TXOP Transmission Opportunity, according to the information transmitted by the access point to the station, and is implemented for wireless QoS between RF media.

Power Save Certification[edit]

The Wi-Fi Alliance has added Power Save Certification to the WMM specification. Power Save uses mechanisms from 802.11e and legacy 802.11 to save power (for battery powered equipment) and fine-tune power consumption. The certification provides an indication that the certified product is targeted for power critical applications like Mobile/Smart Phones and portable power devices (I.e Those that require battery or recharging such as smart phones.)

The underlying concept of WMM PowerSave is that the station (STA) triggers the release of buffered data from the access point (AP) by sending an uplink data frame. Upon receipt of such a data (trigger) frame the AP releases previously buffered data stored in each of its queues. Queues may be configured to be trigger enabled, (i.e. a receipt of a data frame corresponding to the queue acts as trigger), and delivery enabled, (i.e. data stored at those queues will be released upon receipt of a frame). Queues refer to the four ACs defined for WMM.

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