Wireless technology has upgraded at a rapid speed over the past few years. Hardly a few years after the Wi-Fi 6 release, the Wi-Fi association is now setting up to release the latest wireless standard known as Wi-Fi 7. This advancement will not only provide increased speed, but also greatly enhance the responsiveness for cutting-edge future technologies and immersive customer experiences.
Wi-Fi 7 is the next generation of Wi-Fi technology and is still developing. But there are some new features that we can expect from Wi-Fi 7, and today we’re going to talk about them and how Wi-Fi 7 is better than Wi-Fi 6/6E.
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What is Wi-Fi 7 (Wi-Fi 802.11be)?
The Wi-Fi Alliance, the body that oversees the design and standards of this wireless technology, has produced a new standard for wireless network communication called Wi-Fi 7, also referred to by its technical name, 802.11be.
Wi-Fi 7 is a new wireless networking standard that will replace Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) and Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax), which have been made become available in 2019 and 2020, respectively.
Therefore, not too long ago, when Wi-Fi 6 was launched, it was not a significant improvement; instead, it delivered an incremental increase in speed and latency.
This was the case because Wi-Fi 6 was a minor upgrade. Wi-Fi Alliance provided compatibility for the 6GHz spectrum for the first time with Wi-Fi 6E. However, the new frequency was unused. Thus it could have functioned to its full potential and needed to be utilized to its maximum capacity. The release of Wi-Fi 7 brings about a shift in all aspects.
What Are the New Features of Wi-Fi 7?
The next iteration of Wi-Fi will have a multitude of enhancements that will usher in all-new levels of reactivity and consistency. Wi-Fi technology has been helping to keep the globe linked for more than 20 years by catering to the ever-increasing requirements of an ever-expanding user base. Intel has been a contributor to this ever-evolving endeavor throughout the process.
The new features of Wi-Fi 7 will expand upon the innovations of Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E to not only enable higher speeds but also drastically increase responsiveness and dependability for future applications that require highly consistent and precise results.
Here are the new features of Wi-Fi 7:
Broadening the Bandwidth of Individual Channels from 160 MHz to 320 MHz
The 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequency ranges are both different unlicensed strands crowded and restricted in their availability. Existing Wi-Fi networks will invariably experience inferior quality of service when used to operate innovative applications such as virtual reality and augmented reality (quality of service). Wi-Fi 7 will support the 6 GHz frequency range and extend new frequency modes to reach a maximum speed of 30 Gbps.
Even though legacy Wi-Fi gives users access to several different wireless bands, most devices only use a single bar for transmissions; they only shift to another round if the surrounding conditions change.
Wi-Fi 7 devices can connect concurrently on two bands thanks to MLO or Multi-Link Operation. Aggregation makes it possible to get higher speeds, thanks to this. Both bands may be used simultaneously to communicate redundant or unique data to provide increased dependability with extremely low and accurate latency.
Because each user in Wi-Fi 6 may only broadcast or receive frames on the RUs allotted, this significantly reduces the flexibility in scheduling spectrum resources. Wi-Fi 7 describes a system that allows numerous RUs to be assigned to a single user.
This alleviated the issue and further increased the spectrum’s overall efficiency. The standard specifications include various constraints on the RU combination to maintain a healthy balance between the design complexity and spectrum use.
Small RUs can only be mixed with other small RUs, but big RUs may only be coupled with other large RUs. Both small and big RUs can be united into a single RU.
The highest-order modulation that Wi-Fi 6 can handle is called 1024-QAM, enabling each modulation symbol to convey as many as 10 bits of information.
Wi-Fi 7 implements 4096-QAM, which enables every modulation signal to hold 12 bits, making the rate increase even more possible. Comparing 4096-QAM in Wi-Fi 7 to 1024-QAM in Wi-Fi 6, which uses the same coding, the latter can achieve a 20% improvement in data transfer rate.
Additional Data Streams, as well as Improved MIMO
Wi-Fi 7 doubles the previous maximum of 8 spatial streams to 16. This effectively doubles the possible physical communication rate compared to Wi-Fi 6. Wi-Fi 7 offers distributed MIMO and has the capacity for multiple data streams.
That is, 16 data streams can be delivered by various access points simultaneously, meaning numerous Aps must cooperate.
The multi-channel operation, comparable to carrier aggregation in cellular connection, is one more feature that jumps out in Wi-Fi 7, and it is one of its most notable additions.
Because Wi-Fi can support many frequency bands, an end-user device can connect on various bands simultaneously with the AP points, which increases the data rate.
The industry urgently needs to implement new 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, and 6 GHz coordination, spectrum management, and transmission techniques to maximize the use of all available spectrum resources.
The TGbe is responsible for defining several multi-link grouping technologies, including multi-link channel allocation and transmission. These technologies are included in the MAC architecture of improved multi-link aggregation.
Within the scope of the present 802.11 protocol, there needs to be more cooperation between access points (APs). Features that the manufacturer defines include frequently used WLAN functionalities such as automated radio calibration and intelligent roaming.
The purpose of multi-AP coordination is to improve channel selection and modify loads between access points (APs) to ensure optimal usage of cognitive radio and fair allocation of those resources.
Wi-Fi 7’s multi-AP coordination is achieved using inter-cell coordinated scheduling in the time and frequency domains, multi-cell interference cooperation, and multi-input multi-output (MIMO) scheduling. Because of this, interference between APs is decreased, and the usage of air interface resources is significantly improved.
Frequency Coordination Automation
In 2020, when Wi-Fi 6E was announced, avoiding collisions with other devices using the 6GHz band was a significant hurdle.
For instance, NASA and other federal entities in the United States utilize the 6GHz channel to interact with satellites. This includes weather radar and other similar technologies.
Because of this, the potential of the 6GHz channel cannot be utilized fully by wireless technology. There are other regulatory hurdles of an exact nature in other locations. Automated Frequency Coordination, often known as AFC, was incorporated into Wi-Fi 7 to solve this problem.
How Wi-Fi 7 is better than Wi-Fi 6/6E?
Examining the various distinctions between the two protocols is the best approach to responding to this question “How Wi-Fi 7 is better than Wi-Fi 6/6E?” There are three major ones: the increase in channel width, the QAM, and the reduction in the theoretical maximum speed.
Here’s the explanation for each:
Increased Channel Width
Wi-Fi 7 has increased channel width.
“We don’t have enough capacity to achieve that” is commonly heard when individuals feel they lack the necessary resources to complete a task. Taking a page from wireless, we now have more excellent space for data transfer.
The broadest possible channel bandwidth in the 5 GHz band was 160 MHz, but with additional spectrum in the 6 GHz band, that number has increased to 320 MHz. If you want to see how much of an increase this is, consider that the whole 2.4 GHz spectrum is only 83 MHz wide.
Wi-Fi 7 has Higher QAM
The last change is a higher QAM. The method of encoding information onto a radio signal is called quadrature amplitude modulation. Wi-Fi 6 (1024-QAM) and Wi-Fi 7 (4096-QAM) are in development. Since 4K resolution is already possible for televisions, why not for wireless networks? With the 320 MHz broad channel and the increased QAM rate, we can reach 46 Gbps.
Significant Velocity Gap
Wi-Fi 6 has a top speed of 9.6 Gbps (which, to be fair, is fast), whereas Wi-Fi 7 is predicted to reach speeds of up to 46 Gbps. At that rate, a single customer may expect 46 Gbps. You’ve hit the plaid range3 on the speedometer.
Wi-Fi 4 vs Wi-Fi 5 vs Wi-Fi 6 vs Wi-Fi 6E vs Wi-Fi 7
Try to cover basics of all the deciding underline WiFi parameters like, QAM, Channel widths, Multi-link operation (MLO), MU-MIMO streams, Automated frequency coordination (AFC),
Comparison: Wi-Fi 4 vs. Wi-Fi 5 vs. Wi-Fi 6 vs. Wi-Fi 6E vs. Wi-Fi 7
When it comes to WiFi, there are a few different types that you might encounter. Here’s a quick rundown of the most common types of WiFi and what sets them apart:
- WiFi 4, also known as 802.11n, is the fourth generation of WiFi technology. It was released in 2009 and offered speeds up to 600Mbps.
- WiFi 5, also known as 802.11ac, is the fifth generation of WiFi technology. It was released in 2014 and offered speeds up to 3.5Gbps.
- WiFi 6, also known as 802.11ax, is the sixth generation of WiFi technology. It was released in 2019 and offered speeds up to 9.6Gbps.
- WiFi 6E, also known as 802.11ax-2, is an extension to WiFi 6 released in 2020. It offers speeds up to 12Gbps.
- WiFi 7, also known as 802.11be, is the seventh generation of WiFi technology. It is yet to be released in 2024 and will offer speeds up to 30Gbps.
QAM for Wi-Fi 4, 5, 6, 6E, and 7
Below we have discussed the difference of each Wi-Fi generation based on QAM:
- Wi-Fi 4 QAM: Wi-Fi 4 uses two types of QAM – 64-QAM and 256-QAM. 64-QAM allows for data rates of up to 600Mbps, while 256-QAM pushes that up to 1.2Gbps. That’s nearly double the maximum data rate of Wi-Fi 3!
- Wi-Fi 5 QAM: Wi-Fi 5 QAM is a newer, more advanced modulation technique that can provide faster speeds and better performance than traditional Wi-Fi 4 QAM. When using Wi-Fi 5 QAM, your router will automatically select the best possible modulation scheme for each device connected to it. This means that your devices will always be able to communicate at the highest possible speed, providing you with the best possible performance.
- Wi-Fi 6 QAM: With the global rollout of the new WiFi 6 standard, the latest QAM technology for wireless routers has entered the market. Compared to the previous 256QAM used in WiFi 5, 1024QAM is a significant enhancement that quadruples the data rate per modulation cycle. This is challenging when there are 1,024 individuals in the metaphorical living room, especially if there is noise or other distractions.
- Wi-Fi 6E QAM: One of the critical benefits of Wi-Fi 6E is its use of advanced 256 QAM modulation. This allows more data to be transmitted in each channel, increasing bandwidth and speed. Wi-Fi 6E also uses wider Channels than previous versions of Wi-Fi, which further increases its potential throughput.
- Wi-Fi 7 QAM: With the introduction of 4096-QAM in Wi-Fi 7, each modulation signal may store 12 bits, thereby enabling the potential for a speed boost. Using the same coding scheme, Wi-Fi 6’s 1024-QAM is 20% more efficient in transferring data than Wi-Fi 7’s 4096-QAM.
|Wi-Fi 4||Wi-Fi 5||Wi-Fi 6||Wi-Fi 6E||Wi-Fi 7|
|Launch date||2009||2019||2019||2021||2024 (expected)|
|Max data rate||600Mbps||3.5 Gbps||9.6 Gbps||9.6 Gbps||46 Gbps|
|Bands / Frequency||2.4 GHz and 5 GHz||5 GHz||2.4 GHz, 5 GHz||2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, 6 GHz||2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, 6 GHz|
|Channel size||20, 40 MHz||20, 40, 80, 80+80, 160 MHz||20, 40, 80, 80+80, 160 MHz||20, 40, 80, 80+80, 160 MHz||Up to 320 MHz|
|Modulation||64-QAM||56-QAM OFDM||1024-QAM OFDMA||1024-QAM sOFDMA||4096-QAM OFDMA|
|MIMO||2×2 MIMO||4×4 MIMO DL MIMO||8×8 UL/DL MU-MIMO||8×8 UL/DL MU-MIMO||16×16 UL/DL MU-MIMO|
|Security||WEP/ WPA||WPA2||WPA3||WPA3||WPA4 (TBD)|
Where WiFi 7 be Useful?
Wi-Fi 7 boosts wireless experiences with its extremely fast internet speeds and consistently low latency, thereby accelerating emerging use cases such as low-latency extended reality (XR), VR Applications, augmented reality (AR) applications, 8K video streaming, social cloud-based gaming, and simultaneous video casting and conferencing.
TP-Links New Wi-Fi 7 Product Launch
TP-Link has announced its new line of Wi-Fi 7 products. This new generation of TP-Link routers, extenders, mesh systems, Gaming routers, and Enterprise Wi-Fi 7 are designed to provide faster speeds, excellent coverage, and more reliable connections than ever.
TP-Link hosted an event to introduce its first products to its customers with all the new features in Wi-Fi 7. The products are mentioned below:
Whole Home Mesh Wi-Fi 7 (Deco BE95
- Quad-band Wi-Fi 7 speeds up to 33 Gbps
- Enhanced Security with a home shield
- 10G Fiber and Ethernet Ports
- Powerful CPU
Wi-Fi 7 Router (Archer BE900)
- Quad-band Wi-Fi 7 speeds up to 24 Gbps
- Dual 10G Ports
- Enhanced Security with a home shield
- Powerful CPU
Wi-Fi 7 Gaming Router (Archer GE800)
- Tri-Band Speed Wi-Fi 7 Speed up to 19 Gbps
- Dual 10G Ports
- Quad Acceleration for Games
- Exclusive Game Panel
Enterprise Wi-Fi 7 (Omada EAP780)
- Tri-Band Speed Wi-Fi 7 Speed up to 22 Gbps
- Two 10G PoE Ports
- Omada Mesh and Seamless Roaming
- Centralized Management
Our comprehensive guide on the new features of Wi-Fi 7 standard and how Wi-Fi 7 is better than Wi-Fi 6/6E concludes here. The technical specifications clarify that Wi-Fi 7 will significantly improve over its predecessors, Wi-Fi 6 and 6E. Those who use several Wi-Fi-enabled devices in their homes or workplaces will be especially pleased with Wi-Fi 7’s enhanced internet speeds, more simultaneous device connectivity, and decreased latency.
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