A Survey on Multi-AP Coordination Approaches over Emerging WLANs: Future Directions and Open Challenges

by   Shikhar Verma, et al.

The 802.11 IEEE standard aims to update current Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) standards to meet the high demands of future applications, such as 8K videos, augmented/virtual reality (AR/VR), the Internet of Things, telesurgery, and more. Two of the latest developments in WLAN technologies are IEEE 802.11be and 802.11ay, also known as Wi-Fi 7 and WiGig, respectively. These standards aim to provide Extremely High Throughput (EHT) and lower latencies. IEEE 802.11be includes new features such as 320 MHz bandwidth, multi-link operation, Multi-user Multi-Input Multi-Output (MIMO), orthogonal frequency-division multiple access, and Multiple-Access Point (multi-AP) cooperation (MAP-Co) to achieve EHT. With the increase in the number of overlapping Access Points (APs) and inter-AP interference, researchers have focused on studying MAP-Co approaches for coordinated transmission in IEEE 802.11be, making MAP-Co a key feature of future WLANs. Additionally, the high overlapping AP densities in EHF bands, due to their smaller coverage, must be addressed in future standards beyond IEEE 802.11ay, specifically with respect to the challenges of implementing MAP-Co over 60GHz bands. In this article, we provide a comprehensive review of the state-of-the-art in MAP-Co features and their drawbacks concerning emerging WLAN. Finally, we discuss several novel future directions and open challenges for MAP-Co.


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