Wi-Fi 6 based on the 802.11ax standard became very popular in the past year, and the Wi-Fi Alliance began certifying Wi-Fi 6 devices in September of that year,media reported. Now, the latest version of the Wi-Fi standard may be extended to a new band for the first time on top of the existing 2.4GHz and 5GHz.
At today’s press conference, the Wi-Fi Alliance announced a new term to distinguish between the upcoming Wi-Fi 6E, a 6GHz-enabled device. But the group notes that the 6GHz band is not yet available for Wi-Fi because it is still awaiting approval from regulators around the world. Recently, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai expressed an intention to make the 6GHz band available for Wi-Fi, so it could mean it will soon be approved in the United States.
Phil Solis, head of research at IDC, says the use of the 6GHz band is likely to increase rapidly because of its huge Wi-Fi potential.
Once approved by regulators, smartphones and consumer access points are expected to be the first devices to adopt the technology, followed by business access points. The Wi-Fi Alliance says the Wi-Fi 6E will be particularly suitable for augmented reality and virtual reality. It will also help address the problem of insufficient Wi-Fi spectrum, which provides continuous spectrum blocks that can accommodate 14 additional 80MHz channels and 7 additional 160MHz channels.
While higher spectrum can provide faster speeds and greater capacity, it is smaller in scope and more easily blocked by obstacles. As a result, the 6GHz band is unlikely to replace the existing Wi-Fi band. Of course, it’s only when Wi-Fi 6E is really available that you can see the real benefits, and now, we don’t know when that’s going to happen.