For now and into the future, internet speed is something that every single person, company, country, or the world is obsessed with. Some of the breaking news from every corner of the world has been about the highs of internet speeds achieved in that part of the world. In our homes and offices, the newest thing in town is Wi-Fi 6 which promises to bring internet speeds and performance that are yet to be seen in our homes or offices.
Having super-fast internet is a thing envied the world over. During these Covid-19 times, having a home with fast internet has made working from home easier. You can imagine having to make a video presentation on Zoom or Google video with lagging internet.
In addition, our homes are becoming super smart. In every American home currently, you will find a minimum of 10 Wi-Fi enabled devices. Most of these devices require high-speed internet for optimal performance.
These smart devices include smartphones, tablets, android boxes, TVs, laptops, computers, door locks, Smart fridges, lawn sprinklers, LED lights, and other devices.
With all this in mind, the new Wi-Fi standards were approved to ensure all your devices, online meetings, gaming, 4K streaming, and other online activities are optimally conducted. The new generation Wi-Fi also referred to as Wi-Fi 6 promises to make these online activities seamless.
However, there are so many devices that are available in our homes or in the market today that cannot enjoy the fast Wi-Fi 6 speed. This is because they are not Wi-Fi 6 enabled and thus will continue operating at the Wi-Fi 5 or older standards.
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What is Wi-Fi 6?
Wi-Fi 6 is the new Wi-Fi standard that is also known as 802.11ax. These new standards were approved in 2019.
Before that Wi-Fi 6 standards, we had 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5) Wi-Fi technology standards. Wi-Fi 6 comes with improved Wi-Fi performances with speeds of up to 12Gbps. These speeds mean that you can download your favorite movie in just a few seconds or minutes depending on the size of the movie.
Besides, the Wi-Fi 6 speeds can enable you to stream your favorite 4K movie while your colleague is enjoying their gaming without any lags at all.
Wi-Fi standards comparison table
The table below explains the Wi-Fi standards, the years approved and their features.
|Wi-Fi standard||Year that it was approved||Frequencies||Maximum data rate|
|802.11ax (W-Fi 6)||2019||5GHz and 2.4GHz||10-12Gbps|
|802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5)||2014||5GHz and 2.4GHz||1.3Gbps|
|802.11n (Wi-Fi 4)||2009||5GHz and 2.4GHz||600Mbps|
Most of the devices in the market today are made with Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) specifications. Therefore, the design and manufacture of newer devices are with Wi-Fi 6 specifications. All these devices are however backward compatible. This means that they are compatible with the current standard and any other previous standards.
For most American homes, the strength of Wi-Fi 6 is that the Wi-Fi 6 speed can be shared among several devices. Most American homes have at least 9 devices thus Wi-Fi 6 will provide the best connections ever.
How to get Wi-Fi 6
There are two major components when you want to access Wi-Fi 6. The two components are:
Wi-Fi 6 Router: There are several Wi-Fi 6 routers available in the market today. They are the future of Wi-Fi routers. In our reviews, we found great ones among Netgear routers, Asus routers, TP-Link routers, Linksys routers among other brands.
Most of the Wi-Fi 6 routers have a powerful CPU, antennas, and the latest technology to support the Wi-Fi 6 performance. They also increase efficiency and boost data transfer rates as compared to Wi-Fi 5 and other previous standards.
Wi-Fi 6 Compatible devices: To access the Wi-Fi 6 performances as generated by your router, you require Wi-Fi 6 devices. These devices have hardware and technological update to support the Wi-FI 6 speed. Some of these devices include laptops, computers, smartphones, tablets, among other devices.
What are the Wi-Fi 6 benefits?
The following are the benefits of Wi-Fi 6 vs Wi-Fi 5 and other previous versions.
Wi-Fi 6 speed:
As we have already intimated, Wi-Fi 6 supports excellent speeds. The new standard supports speeds of up to 12Gbps. These speeds are almost 4 times the speed of the previous Wi-Fi generation. To ensure that the routers can support these speeds, the manufacturers add advanced technologies like MU-MIMO (Multiple-user, Multiple-input, Multiple-output) which ensures all devices get the blazing speeds.
Wi-Fi 6 comes with reduced latency during data transmission. Therefore, Wi-Fi 6 employs the use of a 160MHz channel utilization capacity to facilitate this. Thus, your internet connections are not disconnected and improve the load times. This is especially important for internet intense activities like gaming or 4K streaming. The latency reduction is facilitated by the latest Wi-Fi 6 technologies such as OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access). OFDMA helps to ensure the packing of data to signals for transmission is done faster.
Connecting more devices with a better internet connection
These days, there has been an increase in the number of devices in our homes. This means that you need a better Wi-Fi connection to ensure all the devices function optimally. Thus, Wi-Fi 6 achieves this by reduced latency and better internet speeds besides the other latest technologies.
Reduced battery use for your Wi-Fi-connected devices
We have all seen how the use of mobile data consumes the phone’s battery very fast. Moreover, the same happens for all devices when there is a poor internet connection since the device takes a lot of time to transmit data. With Wi-Fi speeds, you are assured of longer battery life since data transmission is crisp.
Improved internet connection security
Each wireless standard comes with its own security protocols. Wi-Fi 6 comes with a new advanced security protocol, WPA3 which makes it almost impossible for hackers to guess your login information.
Who made Wi-Fi 6?
The internet standards are developed by the largest association of technical professionals that is called the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Therefore, we know the IEEE as the keeper of Wi-Fi. For any device to certify that it meets a certain Wi-Fi standard, it has to undergo inspection by the IEEE.
The IEEE in addition to developing the Wi-Fi standards they also ensures the industry meets those standards. This is very important to ensure all the devices produces are meeting the indicated standards.
Wi-Fi 6 Devices
There are several devices that have been produced that meet the Wi-Fi 6 standards. We will categorize the devices into routers and compatible devices. It is quite clear that most of the households have several devices that require Wi-Fi 6 performances.
There are several routers that are available in the market today that are Wi-Fi 6 certified. Most of the router’s brands have had a race against time to ensure they give the market a device worth the title ‘best Wi-Fi 6 device’.
Some of the best routers in the market today are Wi-Fi 6 certified. As described in the benefits above, Wi-Fi 6 routers give the best range, connect several devices, and are from multiple brands. There are several Mesh devices that are Wi-Fi 6 certified too.
Of note, however, these routers come at a premium. However, for the features and the futuristic nature of these routers, it is a small price to pay.
Wi-Fi 6 Compatible devices
There are several latest devices that are Wi-Fi 6 compatible. Thus, there are several high-end phones, laptops, and other devices that are Wi-Fi 6 compatible.
The flagship smartphones have not been left behind. These devices include Samsung Galaxy Note 10, Samsung Galaxy S20, iPhone 11, Huawei P40 Pro, and LG V60 ThinQ. Other devices include:
- iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max
- iPhone SE
- Motorola Edge Plus
- OnePlus 8 and 8 Pro
- Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10E
- Samsung Galaxy Fold
There are several laptops that are also Wi-Fi 6 compatible. These devices have Wi-Fi 6 as their default option. They include:
- Asus Chromebook Flip c436
- Dell XPS 13 (2020)
- HP Spectre x360
- Lenovo Yoga c940
- LG Gram 17
In scouring the other devices, we did not meet many other compatible devices.
As we have seen, Wi-Fi 6 will change the way the world uses internet connections. The new standard that was approved in 2019 enables faster internet speeds, better range, and connection of several devices.
There are very few devices that can benefit from Wi-Fi 6 technologies. However, we expect several devices to be compatible and several companies and homes to adopt Wi-Fi 6 technologies.
Therefore, we recommend that for faster connections into the future, explore getting a Wi-Fi 6 router.