Wifi 6E is Here, But is Your Network Ready for It?
WiFi 6E is taking wireless internet to new heights. But before your enterprise can power into the 6E era, you need to have a compatible network that can handle the latest operating speeds.
In the digital age, reliable, high-speed network connectivity is more important than ever for enterprises looking to sustain peak performance levels. It’s no surprise, then, that new, faster ways of connecting are constantly emerging. The latest of these is WiFi 6E, an innovation that builds off of the already high-speed WiFi 6 to bring even faster speeds with the promise of reducing network congestion.
But beware: leveraging the benefits of WiFi 6E will be little more than a pipedream if you don’t first take the necessary steps to ready your network infrastructure for it. The fact is, your network speed can only be as good as the structured cabling, access points, and switches it runs on. Before you can even think about implementing WiFi 6E, you first need to make sure your infrastructure will support it.
What is WiFi 6E?
WiFi 6E is a brand new wireless option that not only delivers faster speeds, but also broadens the available channels for wireless connectivity in an effort to reduce congestion. While non-6E devices will continue to run on 2.4gHz and 5gHz bands, 6E-enabled devices will now have the option to run on a new 6gHz band — the first new band allowed by the FCC since 1999.
The Wifi 6E 6gHz band is designed to minimize network disruptions and create clearer channels for devices to function. It does this by affording added capacity that remedies congestion and connection issues. WiFi 6E’s wider channels range up to 160 MHz and are so big that they’re perfectly suited for the latest virtual reality and high-definition video innovations. What’s more, since only 6E-compatible devices can operate on the frequency band, WiFi 6E eliminates the interference from microwaves and other known interferers that are seen on 2.4gHz and 5gHz bands.
Other benefits of WiFi 6E include:
- Improved cybersecurity features that are compatible with smart devices.
- Enhanced multi-user data management that helps optimize network performance across more devices than ever before.
- Elimination of the overlap, overcrowding, and interference seen with pre-existing bands.
- Faster network speeds, lower latency, and more bandwidth — all of which free up resources for future innovations across 8K streaming, AR/VR, and more.
- Greater network control, which means greater efficiency across enterprises.
- Upgraded performance in network capacity and efficiency.
- A twofold increase in the number of endpoints an access point can communicate with concurrently.
WiFi 6E: Only as Good as the Sum of its Parts
While there’s no doubt that all of these WiFi 6E benefits are exciting, they remain a moot point if you don’t have a compatible network apparatus in place. To be online and operable on WiFi 6E, you need a network that can support 6E’s faster speeds.
What that means is that in order to cross into the WiFi 6E era, you must first establish that your existing network can actually make the transition. It might seem like installing 6E access points will be enough to unlock the full potential of the new WiFi, but it’s not. To fully leverage 6E you have to go beyond compatibility with your access points and endpoints — you have to look at your full infrastructure, including switches and cabling.
The fact is, without the network infrastructure in place to handle the newer speeds, any WiFi 6E-enabled devices and access points will be unable to leverage the many benefits associated with the new WiFi. Attempting to run WiFi 6E speeds — speeds with theoretical maximums that are three times greater than the previous 802.11ac iteration — with the wrong infrastructure is an exercise in futility. Even if your access points have the requisite power for 6E, without 6E compatible cabling, switching, and more, your WiFi speeds will stay unchanged.
If you’re still unconvinced about the importance of a proper network infrastructure, consider this extreme example: Imagine the ISP hands off 10gb of speed, but your switches and cabling can only handle 1gb. The result is that your new 6E capable access points at the network’s edge will only run at the slower speed because that’s all your complete infrastructure can handle.
Prepare Your Network for WiFi 6E
While that may seem daunting, there’s good news too: there is no need to fully tear down your existing setup to create a network infrastructure that supports WiFi 6E. There are plenty of ways to enhance your existing infrastructure to get it ready for the 6E revolution.
The best way to achieve that goal is to work with a network services provider that has the experience and expertise to transform your network into one that supports WiFi 6E. At Turn-Key Technologies, Inc. (TTI), we have 30 years of experience preparing networks for the latest innovations — whether they relate to WiFi, cybersecurity, or anything else in the tech world!
Our experts will work with you to determine which products best suit your needs and your budget so you can make the most of the benefits WiFi 6E has to offer. Contact us today to begin the process of unlocking the latest in wireless technology!
By Tony Ridzyowski