Wi-Fi 6 - the Sixth Generation of Wireless Network

By Web Desk Jun 6 2020 2:08PM


Our internet requirements are increasing day by day. For uploading and downloading files, playing video games, watching videos, etc… we prefer an uninterrupted connection. If your network has excellent speed, you can complete your daily operations in a short time span. If using any Wi-Fi network at your office/home, you might have experienced some network speed limitations while connecting to multiple smart devices such as laptops, smartphones, tablets, 4K TVs, thermostats, and others.



This is common with the existing Wi-Fi standards and to overcome this, Wi-Fi - 6, the sixth generation of wireless networking has introduced in 2019. This latest generation of Wi-Fi is also called “AX WiFi" or "802.11ax WiFi”.


Compared with the current 802.11ac WiFi standard(Wi-Fi 5), Wi-Fi 6 not only improves the speed but also offers better user experience, higher efficiency, and larger coverage. Wi-Fi 6 is 40% faster than existing Wi-Fi 5. I.e; the speed rating of Wi-Fi 6 is 9.6Gbps compared to the 6.9Gbps in Wi-Fi 5 standard. Wi-Fi 6 uses 1024-QAM, 4× Longer Symbol, and 160 MHz Channel for providing fast Wi-Fi connection and ultra-smooth 4K and even 8K streaming. Wi-Fi 6 is ideal for crowded networks and provides 4 times greater capacity by using 8x8 uplink/downlink, MU-MIMO, OFDMA, and BSS Color. 


Some key terms to discuss:


  • 1024 QAM: The 1024 QAM modulation scheme increases the throughput by 25% and it enables sending signals packed with more data.
  • 160 MHz Channel: The data rate of a signal is determined with channel bandwidth. Increased bandwidth means faster connection and for Wi-Fi 6 technology, the bandwidth of 160MHz offers a wider channel to increase speed.
  • 4x Longer OFDM Symbol: The OFDM divides the data into smaller subcarriers to improve stability and to offer larger coverage. The 4x longer OFDM symbol utilized in Wi-Fi 6 creates 4x more subcarriers to offer coverage to a broader area.
  • MU-MIMO: It stands for “Multi-User, Multiple Input, Multiple Output” and this technology is used by routers to communicate between different devices(eight devices for Wi-Fi 6) at a time.
  • OFDMA: OFDMA is “Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access” and this increases the efficiency of Wi-Fi 6 in terms of both uploads and downloads. This technology aims to relieve network congestion by efficiently sharing channels.
  • BSS Color: The BSS(Base Service Station) Color helps to avoid Wi-Fi conflicts by separating signals from the neighbor networks.
  • TWT: TWT is “Target Wake Time” and it aims to improve the device battery life. This factor determines when and how often the device needs to wake up and transfer files.
  • Backward Compatability: Wi-Fi 6 is backward compatible and the user doesn’t need to replace their devices.




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