What features does the Wi-Fi 6 have and how fast is it?

ByLinky Johnson 2019-06-12 319

Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) is the successor to the ac standard (Wi-Fi 5) introduced in 2013. What's 802.11 all about? This specification is the most widely used WLAN standard worldwide and is maintained by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). This ensures that all devices with 802.11 certification are compatible with each other. New standards are constantly being added, Wi-Fi 6 is just another step in the development. The latest Wi-Fi 5 standard is several years old and has been extended several times.

Wi-Fi 6 will replace Wi-Fi 5, but will continue to use the familiar 2.4 and 5 gigahertz (GHz) frequency bands. In the past, routers only used the frequency range of 2.4 GHz for sparking, the advantages of which include a long range with constant transmission power and good penetration of walls. However, the 2.4 GHz band is often overloaded, so modern routers regularly switch back and forth between the 2.4 and 5 GHz ranges depending on the load. The bottom line is less interference and more speed.

In addition to Multiple Input, Multiple Output (MIMO), which improves the use of multiple antennas on the router, Wi-Fi 6 now supports a new technology called MIMO-OFDM, an abbreviation for Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing. OFDM reduces transmission delays for many simultaneous network accesses through finer signal splitting. Although Wi-Fi 6 "only" achieves about 37 percent more data transmission than Wi-Fi 5, OFDM quadruples throughput. In practical terms, this means a transmission speed of up to 11 gigabits per second (Gbit/s), a large leap from the maximum 1.3 Gbit/s possible with Wi-Fi 5. A movie with high 4K resolution would be so on the PC in a few minutes, music or photos in less than a second.

Not only will the transmission speed increase with the new WLAN standard, but above all, the connection will become considerably more stable in heavily frequented networks. Anyone who is often on the road at airports or trade fairs knows that WLAN networks are often overloaded. Wi-Fi 6 is intended to remedy this situation and provide delay-free access in networks with many users.

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