The Wi-Fi Alliance have released a new certification standard for allowing better wireless performance amongst devices in a wireless-network segment. This standard, known as Tunnelled Direct Link Setup, allows devices that are authenticated with the same access point to transmit data directly to each other.
Allowing direct node-to-node connection after an access point establishes the connection to allow for faster data-transfer performance between clients on a Wi-Fi segment. This would also yield an improved quality-of-service for media streaming or improved latency for real-time gaming.
Not like Wi-Fi Direct where a device that is normally a Wi-Fi client is there to facilitate a network connection. This is more about establishing a direct best-case device-to-device connection rather than a via-access-point connection for a file transfer or media-stream method as a way of improving the data-transfer performance.
When a TDLS link is set up, the devices would form this link at the best abilities available to each other, such as higher speed, quality-of-service, power-saving practices or security compared to what the segment’s access point would offer. Similarly, the access point does not need to be upgraded for this functionality to take place.
The access point would still play its role if the client devices move further afield, thus repeating the data between the client devices. Similarly it would also fulfil network-bridging tasks such as linking to the wired backbone or the Internet service in the case of a Wi-Fi router.
This functionality would be part of newer Wi-Fi-network chipsets that would be deployed in newer computers and similar devices. It would be interesting to see how it works further once more TDLS-enabled devices are in the field.