Our appetite for internet speed is constantly growing and as current trends continue, the hunger for greater and greater bandwidth speeds will grow. So something like Wi-Fi 6 is a welcome addition to the connectivity menu.
What is Wi-Fi 6
The differences that make Wi-Fi 6 unique are, as you can imagine, mostly down to speed. But how much faster is it?
9.6 Gbps compared to 3.5 Gbps
It's worth noting that these are theoretical maximums, both Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6 are unlikely to reach this top speed. Because this theoretical maximum is spread across multiple devices, users can enjoy much faster speeds, even if they don't reach the max
It achieves this by a more efficient handling of data and traffic. For gamers, this means lower ping, more reliable media multi-tasking and better download/ upload speeds.
More parity between wired and wireless speeds
If you're hardwired to the router due to the better speeds it offers, Wi-Fi 6 can offer you more flexibility. There's still no greater connectivity option than the old traditional wire but Wi-Fi 6 does a lot of things to bridge a gap which previously would have been a chasm.
Speed is obviously the most important thing to the average user, especially people who use their broadband for multimedia purposes but Wi-Fi 6 offers some other key advantages.
WPA3 (Wi-Fi Protected Access) is the security protocol that uses passwords for encryption. Anytime a password is required to sign in to a Wi-Fi network, you see WPA in action. WPA2 has been the standard for a long time, but that's changing with Wi-Fi 6.
Put simply, the big improvement comes in the form of the authentication that it utilises, a more sophisticated handshake occurs between the device and the Wi-Fi network. Coupled with stronger encryption, means that Wi-Fi has never been more secure.
Target wake time (TWT) has the potential to increase battery life on some devices. Essentially, this technology intelligently ceases communications with your device between periods of inactivity and leaving your device's Wi-Fi radio alone to save power.
Can you utilise these advantages?
If the above sounds like an attractive option to you, here are a few things that you need to consider before you make the switch to Wi-Fi 6:
Check if your router supports Wi-Fi 6
To take advantage of Wi-Fi 6 you'll need a capable router, most manufacturers offer Wi-Fi 6 capable routers already, so there are plenty of options to choose from.
Check if your devices can utilise Wi-Fi 6
You'll need devices that have the ability to use Wi-Fi 6. If you have a Wi-Fi 6 compatible device, you can still use the older Wi-Fi versions, but to get the most out of Wi-Fi 6 you'll need devices capable of benefiting from its advantages.
Is it time to Upgrade?
Wi-Fi 6 will have a dramatic effect on the way we interact with our devices, technologies that fall under the category of "internet of things" will have greater and faster functionality.
From general users to gamers there's something to consider for everyone which makes Wi-Fi 6 an attractive option.
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