Wi-Fi 6 is the latest generation of the wireless standards just recently ratified as 802.11ax. In the past Wi-Fi standards were also what the industry referred to them as, for instance 802.11ac. With the latest version of Wi-Fi 802.11ax it is being labeled Wi-Fi 6 since it is the 6th generation of Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi 6 uses both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands in comparison to 802.11ac (Gen 5) which only used the 5Ghz band in that standard.
Do you need to update all my devices to get the benefits of WiFi 6?
Can WiFi 5 coexist with WiFi 6 in the same network?
How it Works
Wi-Fi 6 is the first standard that can transfer data over 1Gbps compared to the recent standards in which it was more theoretical but not implemented in the real world. A couple of enhancements took place, for one the algorithm changed and both up and down links support MIMO (multiple input multiple output) instead of just download like in Wi-Fi 5. Because of the higher throughput the ethernet port now typically supports 2.5Gbps to eliminate bottlenecks of the previous standard 1Gbps ethernet ports.
Lower Latency and higher user density are supported per AP due to the enhanced MU-MIMO design.
Better battery life on devices are increased with the new Target Wait Time allowing for devices to essentially sleep while it is waiting to receive packets from the AP.
Wi-Fi 6 is not a great leap in new technology but more of a few enhancements which has greatly increased the performance and efficiency of previous generations of wireless.
Soon an addition to Wi-Fi 6 will be here called Wi-Fi 6E. The FCC has opened more spectrum to increase the number of channels allowing for higher speeds and less interference.
WHY YOU NEED WI-FI 6?
As the world continues to go wireless the demand put on the Wi-Fi network intensifies. More and more organizations are relying on wireless and less on the wired network for mobility and the expanding increase in IoT devices.
Schools, Stadiums, Cities, Warehouses, Factories, and more are all going wireless which increases the need for better wireless.
Wi-Fi 6 the next step in is closing the gap to what a wired network can do and adding mobility.
BENEFITS OF WI-FI 6
More speed and capacity per AP than previous Wi-Fi standards
Cost is similar to existing Wi-Fi 5 AP’s
Eliminate wired switch ports as more users and IoT devices go wireless
Wi-Fi 6 Access Points can be Managed in both a Cloud and on Premises environments
Wi-Fi 6 Access Points are backwards compatible with previous Generations of Wi-Fi