802.11 refers to standards for wireless networking specified by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
The standards include many revisions such as 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g and 802.11n, which use different frequency bands and offer different data transfer rates.
802.11a operates in the 5GHz band and offers data rates up to 54Mbit/s, for example.
802.11b operates in the 2.4GHz band and has data rates up to 11Mbit/s.
802.11g also operates in the 2.4GHz band, but offers data rates up to 54Mbit/s.
802.11n is a newer standard that uses multiple antennas and other improvements to offer much greater data rates, up to 300Mbit/s. This is also likely to be increased with updates.
The term Wi-Fi has also become synonymous with 802.11 networks, although it is actually a certification of interoperability from vendors that make 802.11 equipment.
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