What is new in WIFI-6E
- November 24, 2021
Wi-Fi’s market expands with Wi-Fi 6E
Wi-Fi standards and protocols have advanced significantly in recent years. Leaps that fundamentally improve user experience, the ability to handle considerably higher device density, and the expansion of use-cases where Wi-Fi previously couldn’t compete. The first step was to upgrade from Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) to Wi-Fi 6. (802.11ax). Wi-Fi 6’s ability to utilize OFDMA, the same technology that 5G is based on, makes significant progress toward more deterministic scheduling by coordinating airtime across clients and lowering the collision domain.
Wi-Fi 6E will be used in all areas, allowing for an increase in productivity. With Wi-Fi 6E, we are now in the midst of yet another Wi-Fi evolution. Wi-Fi 6E uses the same protocols and standards as Wi-Fi 6, but goes beyond the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands by adding 1200 MHz to the 6 GHz bandwidth. The 6 GHz spectrum is being opened up around the world as more regulators and governments understand the social and economic implications of simple and low-cost wireless access. This bodes well for Wi-Fi 6E, as massive investments in new products speed global digitization, resulting in higher productivity, improved learning opportunities, more inclusive experiences, and accelerated business.
A new clean spectrum
It is predicted that by 2023, there will be more M2M/IoT devices connected to Wi-Fi than people. So far, the CAGR for wireless IoT device growth has exceeded 20%, and we’re only getting started. This compares to a 10% increase for more common user devices such as smartphones, laptops, tablets, and so on.
Fundamentally, this means that next-generation networks will confront new challenges in efficiently handling high density. The availability of a clean spectrum is critical to the efficiency of Wi-Fi. Because you have a clear spectrum, you are less likely to have to compete with other users or networks when moving traffic.
Wireless networks will be able to transmit more traffic at faster rates and with better latency, thanks to Wi-Fi 6EThe 6 GHz spectrum is significantly cleaner, with plenty of elbow room and channels to accommodate the expanding number of devices and things.
Wi-Fi 6E has the significant advantage of requiring a Wi-Fi 6 (or newer) stack, which implies that Wi-Fi 5 or prior releases cannot be used in the new 6GHz frequency. This means that all 6GHz Wi-Fi devices can be efficiently scheduled. However, don’t exclude out 2.4 and 5 GHz. We will continue to require and employ the entire unlicensed Wi-Fi spectrum because each brand has its own set of advantages and disadvantages.
Wi-Fi 6E addresses Higher densities reliably
Most users today own multiple gadgets, including a laptop, tablet, phone, smart watch, and health device. At the same time, our settings are growing smarter and more replete with technologies designed to increase our productivity. Add to that the fact that our workplaces are becoming denser, and new hybrid work models and open-office arrangements are becoming more popular. These spaces enable a more flexible workplace built for better collaboration while increasing reliance on the wireless network..
Furthermore, in order to boost productivity, more services are migrating to the cloud. Because these cloud services are centralised, a new reliance on the network for high bandwidth and low latency has emerged. In the not-too-distant future, we’ll witness even more integrated experiences via augmented, mixed, and virtual reality, necessitating even more bandwidth and reduced latency.
Industrial IoT, such as healthcare, is another Wi-Fi 6E application case. In these settings, robots and self-driving cars, sensors, next-generation XR devices, cameras, people, and objects are all jostling for a piece of the spectrum. Because these technologies usually require ultra-low latency (1-15ms), nearly no jitter, and extremely high dependability, collisions and less-than-ideal scenarios may occur.
Wi-Fi 6E tackles and resolves the issues raised in the preceding scenarios, as well as many others. We receive more bandwidth, reduced latency, and, maybe most importantly, cleaner air with the 6 GHz spectrum.
AFC provides extra power for wider use cases.
It’s worth noting that the 6GHz band was not devoid of frequencies. For some decades, incumbents have used the 6 GHz spectrum for microwave and satellite communications. The FCC has to protect incumbent users while still allowing Wi-Fi to’share’ the spectrum. Engineers set out to create a system for interior use that would consume little electricity and would not interfere with existing outdoor systems. This is referred to as Indoor Low-Power (LPI).
The good news is that LPI is expected to function at the current AP density, avoiding the need to re-cable your building. However, there are a variety of applications that would benefit from higher, or “standard,” power. There is now a lot of effort being done on a solution called AFC (Automated Frequency Coordination). This is a centralised database of current incumbent sites that is routinely updated as new towers or dishes are built and includes information on the spectrum that is being used. To use regular power indoors or outdoors, the AP must first check with the AFC to see if power is available at the AP’s location. Keep an eye out for a future blog on a larger topic…
The upgrade from Wi-Fi 5 to 6 was significant enough to get most people’s The upgrade from Wi-Fi 5 to 6 was significant enough to capture the attention of the majority of people. In terms of stack capabilities, this protocol outperforms prior protocols by leaps and bounds. Wi-Fi 6E employs the same Wi-Fi 6 protocol set while increasing accessible spectrum. It enables Wi-Fi networks to support higher densities with more channels, resulting in fewer collisions and a better user experience. And we have improved security using WPA3 standards.