What is WiFi 6?
WiFi: we use it every day, rather everywhere for local area connectivity. Most of your smartphones are useless if they don’t have an internet connection. The primary mode of connecting your smartphone at home is via WiFi. So, why there is all buzz around WiFi 6? We will explain here.
WiFi 6 is nothing but next-generation WiFi that will improve internet speed. As you can see, more and more smart home devices are coming, and they need lots of data. Our data consumption is skyrocketed in recent times as we are now consuming all the entertainment at home via video streaming. Streaming, gaming, and the list go on that needs a faster internet connection.
Furthermore, WiFi 6 is also known as 802.11ax WiFi. It is a successor of the 802.11ac WiFi standard. Wifi 6 can handle more devices than previous standards. You can observe this at home. You have guests at home, and they try to connect to your WiFi router. After a certain number of devices, your router starts overwhelming so much that it stops giving access to any new devices. WiFi 6 will solve this same problem.
So my speed will really fast in WiFi six?
The answer to this question is probably yes. The theoretical speed of WiFi 6 is 9.6 Gbps. Although it is theoretical speed, you will not get such speed in real-world scenarios. But it is much faster than WiFi 5, which has a 6.9 Gbps theoretical speed.
Furthermore, WiFi 6 is not about increasing speed. You will get a slightly higher speed than WiFi 5. However, it is all about connecting more and more devices without compromising the speed of any connected device.
WiFi 6 is not about boosting the speed of individual devices. It is about providing a stable connection and fulfills the data demands in the network. It is all about improving the overall network. For example, at your home, someone is streaming something on TV, another person is playing an online game, another person is video calling someone on the phone, and your devices like a digital thermostat, CCTV, light switches are demanding data. In this scenario, WiFi 6 perfectly fits in. Your traditional router will not allow so many devices to access data at the same time.
What is WiFi6 technology?
WiFi 6 uses two important technologies OFDMA and MU-MIMO. Both of these technologies improve WiFi6 speeds. The MU-MIMO stands for Multi-User, Multiple Input, Multiple Output. This means routers with this technology can communicate with multiple devices at the same time.
Furthermore, current MU-MIMO only works for downloads with limited four devices. In the case of WiFi 6, MU-MIMO can work for uploads and downloads simultaneously with eight devices. So, eight streams are available at the same time.
The second one is OFDMA, which means orthogonal frequency division multiple access. Traditionally, the routers can deliver a single data packet to a single device, and other devices need to wait. While OFDMA can deliver multiple data packets to multiple devices simultaneously, bringing more efficiency in speed and other devices don’t need to wait. It works for both downloads and uploads.
Besides, WiFi6 has a 160 Mhz channel width. It is double than current routers 80 Mhz. So more bandwidth on a wider channel brings a faster internet experience. You can stream in 8k without buffering or download large files without any hassle.
WiFi Six has a BSS (Base Service Station) color. Hence, it minimizes conflicts with your neighbor’s WiFi. It simply marks the frames from the neighboring network. Hence your WiFi 6 router ignores neighboring networks. This means your router is efficient overall.
Advantages of WiFi 6
WiFi Six brings higher data transfer rates so that you can enjoy more speed on your devices. Secondly, it will improve capability in delivering consistent speed to every device connected to the network.
Furthermore, you can add up more devices without any issue as it can accommodate more devices with consistent internet speeds. Low latency brings LAN-like performance wirelessly.
Besides, the important advantage is more battery life of the devices. The Target Wake Time allows devices to negotiate how and when they will wake up to receive and send data. Hence, devices will have more sleep times, increasing battery life. It is beneficial for smartphones and IoT devices.
In conclusion, WiFi 6 will surely bring reliability and consistent performance in dense networks like offices and large buildings. Even you may need them at home too as the number of WiFi devices is getting higher and higher.
Image Courtesy: Netgear