Adaptive or smart antennas will simply add unmatched value to any 802.11ac deployment. Without explicit RF controls, 802.11ac performance will be severely limited.
Because adaptive antennas constantly focus Wi-Fi signals over the fastest possible path at any given time, this provides better spectral efficiency -- enabling larger frames to be transmitted, advanced modulation techniques to be extended and higher SNR/SINR levels to be achieved.
802.11ac is an optimistic protocol with impressive theoretical gains. But at the end of the day, the best approach to improve capacity and enable such high data rates with 802.11ac will require a more sophisticated approach to RF management. Without it, you just might be wasting your time and money.
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.