Rolling out Wifi 6
Wifi 6 – making a big difference to the capacity of Wifi networks
The latest Wifi standard 802.11ax, which has conveniently been given the more user-friendly nomenclature of Wifi 6, is set to make a big difference to the capacity of Wifi networks. Note the use of the word capacity rather than speed. Wifi users usually blame poor performance on low network speeds when what they really need is more network capacity.
That’s why when you plan a Wifi network you need to survey for capacity, not just coverage and network speed. The previous generation of 802.11ac (Wifi 5) wave 2 Access Points improved Wifi speeds to over a Gigabit, enough for most applications, but they didn’t really address the capacity issue. While expert planning and configuration of the Wifi network can ease a capacity constraint, it can’t eliminate it in high density environments like classrooms, halls of residence, meeting rooms, conferences, airports, railway stations, stadia and other public spaces. We have all been there – desperately trying to access a train timetable at the same time as a hundred other delayed commuters or uploading a ‘selfie’ at a One Direction concert (or maybe not!) – unable to upload or download despite having a solid 5 bar connection.
Wifi 6 provides the much needed extra capacity that will improve the performance of your wifi network.
Owners of Samsung 10 or iphone 11 smartphones will be beginning to take advantage of the greater capacity Wifi 6 provides. However, access depends on being in reach of an ‘ax’ access point. Aerohive Networks, now part of Extreme, was one of the first manufacturers to release ‘ax’ access points and AIT has already installed a good number of AP650s and AP630s into locations at its more future proof conscious customers. So, to give users of Wifi 6 enabled devices the opportunity to access improved Wifi it is necessary to install an ax access point. The lucky owners of those devices will then be able to take loads of selfies at the next One Direction concert!!