Three Reasons Why 802.11ax Will Change Wi-Fi Forever

Sep 22, 2019Learning Annex, WiFi Networking

Your devices are improving by leaps and bounds. Your home is more connected than ever, but the technology of Wi-Fi, hasn’t been upgraded since 2014. Updated Wi-Fi goes beyond a new router. Wi-Fi standards are the services and protocols that determine your networks’ performance. Currently, most homes and businesses operate using the WiFi standard of 802.11ac, more commonly known as Wi-Fi 5, however, in early 2019, the next generation of Wi-Fi was introduced: 802.11ax or Wi-Fi 6.

Three Key Features that Set Wi-Fi 6 Apart


Improved Data Efficiency and Capacity – Wi-Fi 6 features more efficient data management, transfer speeds and data capacity, so you can expect significantly faster throughput speeds and enhanced overall performance from WiFi 6 certified devices. WiFi 6 expands the amount of data able to be transferred in radio waves and improves the internal technology that translates that data. It will also improve speeds and efficiencies on WiFi 6 dual-band routers by enabling the use of both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands simultaneously. WiFi 6 will also provide more capacity on the same channels, with less interference between them, further translating into better device performance.


Better Battery Life – Wi-Fi 6 features “target wake time” (TWT), which improves the battery life of your smartphones, laptops and other connected devices. TWT allows your network access point to communicate with your device and put the Wi-Fi connection to sleep when not in use and automatically wake up when Wi-Fi is needed. When the Wi-Fi radio frequency spends more time in sleep mode, it conserves and extends your device’s battery life.


Lower Latency – Since Wi-Fi 6 was designed to handle a higher number of devices and deliver more data to devices, latency drops significantly. This means you’ll have a better internet connection in super busy airports, hotels, festivals and stadiums. With Wi-Fi 6, it is expected that each user’s average speed will improve by four times in areas with a lot of connected devices. This positively impacts both businesses and homes, as more and more devices depend on a fast and stable Internet connection.

Other features of WiFi 6 worth mentioning:

  • Wi-Fi 6 will be able to support 8K video streaming, that is, provided you have access to sufficient download speeds.
  • Wi-Fi 6 is backwards compatible with all existing Wi-Fi devices, so it will work with your current setup—you just won’t be able to get the fastest speeds until every device within your network is Wi-Fi 6 enabled.

To learn more about the evolution of Wi-Fi standards and stay up-to-date on all things Wi-Fi 6, check out Actiontec’s Complete Guide to WiFi Networking.

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