Marvell Announces 802.11ax Device Family

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Julio Urquidi

News Editor
Marvell signaled its entry into the arena for next-generation Wi-Fi with the announcement of its first 802.11ax products.

Marvell's 11ax portfolio includes two, four and eight stream devices. The 88W9068 is a 5 GHz only 8x8 for high-end access points and wireless routers. The 88W9064 is a dual-band 4x4 AP/router device for "mainstream" products. The dual-band 2x2 88W9064S moves down-market even further, targeting service provider and set-top boxes. No solution for mobile devices was announced.

All devices will also support 1024 QAM, off-channel spectrum scanning, dedicated in-service monitoring and precision location. Integrated Bluetooth will also be available for the dual band 88W9064 and 88W9064S SoCs.

Marvell is attempting to distance itself from its competitors by emphasizing support for both downlink and uplink MU-MIMO and OFDMA. All 11ax chipsets announced to date have claimed "support" for uplink MU-MIMO. But Broadcom, Qualcomm and Quantenna have all said it will not be enabled in the first products to ship.

Marvell's announcement follows 11ax introductions from Broadcom, Qualcomm and Quantenna. Broadcom announced two 4-stream AP/router devices and a 2-stream mobile device. Qualcomm's lineup includes an 8x8 5 GHz/4x4 2.4 GHz AP/router SoC and 2x2 client device. Quantenna has gone with yet a different approach with a tri-radio 4x4 11ax device aimed at 11ax mesh products.

Marvell said it has been sampling to "lead customers from early 2017". One of these customers is likely to be Linksys, whose VP of Engineering was quoted in Marvell's release. Linksys' top-end WRT router line is based on Marvell platforms.

Marvell will be featuring its 11ax device portfolio at next month’s CES in Las Vegas.


Part of the Furniture
The most complete 802.11ax Wi-Fi Solution

Marvell offers the industry’s most complete 802.11ax portfolio. Optimized for enterprise and retail access points, carrier gateways, and set-top boxes, it’s the first Wi-Fi solution that provides full MU-MIMO and OFDMA uplink and downlink based on the latest IEEE 802.11ax standards. This will enable the next generation of high-end users, “Generation Upload,” with real-time cloud-based requirements.

Interesting product mix - high-end for Enterprise/Carrier grade, consumer, and client chips.


Very Senior Member
Hopefully we can see at least 4 stream minimum 802.11ax for laptops, and 2 stream for minimum for smartphones.


Regular Contributor
Hopefully we can see at least 4 stream minimum 802.11ax for laptops, and 2 stream for minimum for smartphones.

Unlikely in laptops, mostly due to antenna placement (and wiring) and heat output from the Wi-Fi chipset itself. Laptops usually end up with fairly low-end solutions simply because it's not easy to cool things and now that laptops are wafer thin (well, ok, not quite, but hey), it's even harder to cool things. I can't see notebook manufacturers add another heatpipe just to cool the Wi-Fi chipset.

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