Your Wi-Fi connection is currently either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz, even if you have a Wi-Fi 6 router. (Although, Wi-Fi 6 technology does improve your ability to use multiple devices without slowing down your Wi-Fi speed.)
The FCC voted unanimously on April 23, 2020 to open up the 6 GHz band for unlicensed use. Currently, there is some licensed usage of the 6 GHz band. After consulting a long list of technology and telecommunications businesses, the FCC believes it can open up the 6 GHz band for unlicensed use without interfering with current licensed users.
This move caused a great deal of attention because bandwidth like this has not been available to Wi-Fi networks before. As Jacob Kastrenakes of The Verge reports, “That means there are now more open airwaves — a lot more — that routers can use to broadcast Wi-Fi signals.”
Wi-Fi Alliance states that this new bandwidth includes “nearly six times the total capacity in both 2.4 and 5 GHz, seven contiguous 160 MHz channels, and less interference from legacy Wi-Fi devices. This translates to multigigabit Wi-Fi speeds and more devices performing optimally on a Wi-Fi network at once.”
A signal on the 6 GHz band will not be able to travel as far as one broadcast at 2.4 GHz, but it is believed that the connection will be faster and more stable. Its greatest benefit is a stable connection for multiple devices under the same roof. With more and more people working from home, it is easy to appreciate the benefits this would bring.
In 2018, it was estimated that the economic benefits associated with Wi-Fi in the United States was valued at almost $500 billion. The FCC’s decision to open 6 GHz for unlicensed use, meaning for our cellphones and other electronic devices, could add billions more in benefits to the US economy.
“Wi-Fi 6E” is the designation being used for products that will be able to access the new spectrum. The first Wi-Fi 6E routers are expected to be out before the end of 2020. You will want to look for “Wi-Fi 6E” on routers and the electronic devices that you buy in order to take advantage of the new bandwidth.
Broadcom is making Wi-Fi 6E chipsets for electronic devices. The company stated, “The new 6 GHz spectrum band is expected to be operational in the United States in 2020, and a wide range of 6 GHz enabled devices will be available at launch.” According to Wi-Fi Alliance, “Wi-Fi Alliance members are demonstrating their readiness to move quickly into the band before the end of the year, with initial forecasts expecting more than 316 million Wi-Fi 6E devices will enter the market in 2021.”
Wi-Fi 6E technology is coming soon to allow you to access the 6 GHz band. With the right equipment, within a year you can benefit from this new open highway for Wi-Fi.
If you need help with your business WiFi network, give us a call at 888-596-3998 today!