Intel this week is expected to introduce a chip that adds support for a relatively obscure version of Wi-Fi, a move that could help ease congestion on wireless networks. Intel is expected to announce the availability of a “tri-mode” Wi-Fi chip that supports the two most popular wireless data technology varieties–802.11b and its speedier cousin, 802.11g–and the less-used 802.11a. Intel’s current chips support only the “b” and “g” varieties. Tri-mode Wi-Fi chips are expected to become prevalent allowing computers to automatically connect to the best available network. Though other chipmakers, including Atheros Communications, already have tri-mode Wi-Fi products, Intel’s market presence is expected to give the technology a marketing boost.

Intel this week is expected to introduce a chip that adds support for a relatively obscure version of Wi-Fi, a move that could help ease congestion on wireless networks. Intel is expected to announce the availability of a “tri-mode” Wi-Fi chip that supports the two most popular wireless data technology varieties–802.11b and its speedier cousin, 802.11g–and the less-used 802.11a. Intel’s current chips support only the “b” and “g” varieties. Tri-mode Wi-Fi chips are expected to become prevalent allowing computers to automatically connect to the best available network. Though other chipmakers, including Atheros Communications, already have tri-mode Wi-Fi products, Intel’s market presence is expected to give the technology a marketing boost.