In “Part I – Wi-Fi 6 – Magic Potion for the Internet,” we covered the basics regarding Wi-Fi 6 and its products. In this segment, we are going to focus more on Wi-Fi 6 and 5G networks.

Let’s begin.

What is next for Wi-Fi 6?

The new and developing 802.11 wireless LAN (Local Area Network) technologies continue to expand. Users who need to replace Wi-Fi routers have a decision to make, i.e., buy or wait until the next upgrade cycle in 2021.

The Wi-Fi Alliance and the IEEE 802.11 Working Group won’t stop innovating. Today, most people consider novel networking gear, i.e., a next-generation Wi-Fi means IEEE 802.11ax with a Wi-Fi 6 logo. However, few notebook computers (LG Gram, 17, Dell XPS 13, and others) in stock configurations use Wi-Fi 6 routers.

Users seem to be puzzled over whether to adopt Wi-Fi 6 technology or wait for Wi-Fi 6E to emerge.

Wi-Fi 6 and 5G – technologies make better friends than rivals

Both wireless and cellular WLAN or LAN have introduced new technology generations, and the time has come to select between them.

The most vital thing to mention is that both Wi-Fi 6 and 5G are developed from the same foundation and coexist to support different use cases. It is not a question of picking one over the other.

5G and Wi-Fi 6 promises to dramatically enhance wireless experiences for both—people working virtually and for the enterprises. They will both offer higher data rates to support novel applications, increase network capacity, and offer the ability to connect more devices.

As per a survey, about 76% of executives say they believe 5G will play an important role for their organization in three years, and approximately 70% feels the same way for Wi-Fi 6 technology. About 62% have planned to adopt both technologies within the coming year, and about 93% are planning to co-adopt them within the next three years.

The top three benefits that organizations are aiming to achieve with 5G and Wi-Fi 6 technologies were:

  • Taking advantages of novel technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), edge computing, and big data analytics
  • improving efficiency
  • enhancing security

The exciting factor about 802.11ax/Wi-Fi 6 is that it signifies the single largest jump in wireless capability, more than any previous iterations. Wi-Fi 6 offers four times better wireless performance in even the most densely populated areas than Wi-Fi 5.

5G has been one of the most hotly debated and exciting technologies for years. 5G will replace 4G LTE and entirely transform the role that mobile and intelligent devices play, mainly for IoT.

It’s simple. As Wi-Fi 6 is replacing 802.11ac (Wi-Fi 5), 5G is replacing 4G. 5G is way more enhanced than previous standards of 3G and 4G, allowing VR (virtual reality)/AR (Augmented reality). 5G will offer 50 times more speed, ten times less latency, and 1000 times more capacity than 4G/LTE.

Both Wi-Fi 6 and 5G are essential to the wireless future. Still, Wi-Fi 6 will continue to be the preferred and significant wireless access in the enterprise, especially for indoor networks. This is because technologies such as IoT, smart buildings, industrial organizations, and indoor enterprises need varying network connections that only Wi-Fi 6 can offer.

5G is an exclusively preferred network for outdoor connectivity. With higher speed and advanced capacity, both 5G and Wi-Fi 6 could improve outdoor connectivity. However, few use cases, such as traveling in a car on the highway or traveling via a bullet train at 200 miles per hour, will make 5G a preferred choice for outdoor networks.

Respondents in a survey ranked security of networks and data (about 61%), data speed (about 63%), and resilience and reliability (about 62%) as the essential factors of success for enhanced wireless technologies.

Approximately 87% believed that enhanced wireless technologies could create a significant competitive advantage for their organization.

Drive IoT growth with Wi-Fi 6 and 5G

5G and Wi-Fi 6 may perhaps still be in their early phase, but 2020 is delaying rolling out these technologies due to the coronavirus impact. However, these technologies are going to revolutionize every aspect of connectivity. This revolution is primarily powered by internet-of-things (IoT) solutions that have become ubiquitous across the globe. Soon, people are going to experience technological life where every device is smart.

The tech industry has seen a boom in IoT technology, mainly because of the ample bandwidth available from 4G and Wi-Fi. To maintain IoT’s momentum, bandwidth and speed must increase. This is where 5G and Wi-Fi 6 come in.

With IoT rapidly expanding, majorly in large cities, Wi-Fi 6 will be necessary for maintaining secure, fast, and safe connectivity. Also, Wi-Fi 6 will be compatible with all present standard frequencies, such as 5 GHz.

Huge corporate campuses with significant mobile IoT devices might see an enhanced performance with 5G-based solutions.

For instance, machine-to-machine communication plays a vital role in factory automation. While Wi-Fi 6 might work for a managed manufacturing operation, 5G might augment a huge, campus-wide manufacturing environment.

Final words – 5G and Wi-Fi 6 are a perfect storm for wireless access

5G and Wi-Fi 6 are going to rewrite the rule book of what’s possible entirely. Mainly as the disruption caused by COVID-19 has boosted automation and remote working. Wi-Fi 6 and 5G offers enhanced mobile broadband for immersive experiences through virtual reality and augmented reality.

Wi-Fi 6 and 5G will get next-level seamless functionality to the wireless world.”