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Wireless link layer multicast is an important service primitive for emerging applications, such as live video, streaming audio, and other content telecasts. The broadcast nature of the wireless channel is amenable to multicast because a single packet transmission may be received by all clients in the multicast group. However, in view of diverse channel conditions at different clients, the rate of such a transmission is bottlenecked by the rate of the weakest client. Multicast throughput degrades severely. Attempts to increase the data rate result in lower reliability and higher unfairness. This paper utilizes smart beamforming antennas to improve multicast performance in wireless LANs.
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