he next generation of wireless connectivity, Wi-Fi 6, has been officially launched around the world with the introduction of the Wi-Fi Certified 6 programme from the Wi-Fi Alliance.
The industry group, which is responsible for maintaining and certifying the wireless standard, announced the availability of the programme on September 16th, which will allow companies to highlight new products that are able to take advantage of the technology.
Wi-Fi 6 promises a range of performance improvements over the previous 802.11ac standard - now retroactively referred to as Wi-Fi 5. These include nearly four times the capacity of Wi-Fi 5, which allows it to deliver high-speed connectivity to far more devices simultaneously without any drop-off in performance, as well as lower latency and improved battery life for connected devices.
The Wi-Fi Alliance stated the new standard will support a far more diverse set of devices and applications, and will be particularly suited for deployments in busy, high-traffic locations. It highlighted airports, stadiums and industrial parks as among the places where the new standard should prove to be especially beneficial.
Edgar Figueroa, president and chief executive of the Wi-Fi Alliance, said: "Wi-Fi Certified 6 is ushering in a new era of Wi-Fi, building on Wi-Fi's core characteristics to provide better performance in every environment for users, greater network capacity for service providers to improve coverage for their customers, and new opportunities for advanced applications."
The Alliance added that Wi-Fi 6 builds on the core strengths of the Wi-Fi standard, including affordable performance, efficient operation, security, ease of use, and long-term compatibility, while also delivering a more reliable user experience where there is high user demand for connectivity.
As well as being able to connect more users and meet growing data requirements, the technology will enable advanced wireless applications such as augmented and virtual reality, high-definition content streaming and real-time monitoring.
The introduction of the Wi-Fi Certified 6 programme has been welcomed by several industry figures, with wireless chief technology officer at Cisco Matt MacPherson commenting: "Wi-Fi 6 represents a significant evolution of Wi-Fi, taking wireless connectivity to new heights and enabling new applications and use cases that will continue to shape the world we live in." Read more
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