Wi-Fi 6

Next-generation Wi-Fi

What is Wi-Fi 6?

Wi-Fi experiences a seismic change in performance and capabilities approximately every five years—and Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) is the latest generation of Wi-Fi.

With Wi-Fi synonymous with connectivity, consumers expect and seek out the best Wi-Fi wherever they are. Wi-Fi 6 has the bandwidth, capacity and capabilities to support the ever-expanding requirements of mobile connectivity:

  • Faster network performance—up to four times faster than 802.11.ac
  • Greater capacity—for simultaneous support of users and IoT
  • Reliability—transitions Wi-Fi from a “best-effort” endeavor to a  deterministic wireless technology.
  • Enhanced features—power saving

Ideal for crowded environments with multiple simultaneous users or devices demanding instant immersive connectivity—and necessary for service providers seeking to support higher service-level agreements (SLAs) with more diverse usage profiles.


Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6™ is an industry certification program designed to ensure Wi-Fi interoperability based on the latest Wi-Fi standard—Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax). Devices are validated against a new set of features that support a range of technical enhancements to optimize spectral efficiency, increase throughput and reduce power consumption. Some of the enhancements related to the Wi-Fi 6 standard include:


Orthogonal frequency-division multiple access (OFDMA) and multi-user multiple-in multiple-out (MU-MIMO) are techniques that increase reliability and efficiency in the unlicensed Wi-Fi spectrum. In contrast to previous generations of Wi-Fi, OFDMA allows Wi-Fi performance to be more deterministic, as devices consistently receive more attention with minimal contention. This helps stabilize Wi-Fi performance, especially in higher density environments.

Uplink OFDMA

Uplink-OFDMA reduces collisions and overhead, and also increases the range of Wi-Fi networks. This is because it solves the problem of asymmetry. Access points (APs) transmit signals farther than mobile devices, meaning AP signals can reach devices but device signals cannot reach APs. Uplink-OFDMA can use narrower channels to transmit farther, thus reducing the problem of asymmetry—which is critical in outdoor environments.


Wi-Fi 6’s 1024-QAM constellation (in contrast to 256-QAM for 802.11ac)—in combination with other Wi-Fi 6 techniques—results in a quadrupling of the data rate versus the previous generation of Wi-Fi.

Target wake time

First introduced in the IEEE 802.11ah standard, target wake time (TWT) enables scheduled sleep and power-on (awake) times, along with pre-negotiated wake times between AP and clients, to enhance the battery life of client devices.

Additional resources

  • A1A49B8B-5D80-4C0C-9DBB-88D27D401C49 Created with sketchtool.

    Apurva Kempinski Bali case study

    Improving connectivity for guests takes luxury hospitality to the next level for Apurva Kempinski Bali
  • A1A49B8B-5D80-4C0C-9DBB-88D27D401C49 Created with sketchtool.

    Ruckus T750 Data Sheet

    Outdoor 802.11ax 4x4:4 Wi-Fi AP with 2.5Gbps Backhaul
  • A1A49B8B-5D80-4C0C-9DBB-88D27D401C49 Created with sketchtool.

    Why Is It So Hard To Deliver Great Wi-Fi?

    The explosive growth in devices and applications has resulted in an insatiable demand for faster and better Wi-Fi for over a decade. From 2003 with 500 million connected devices1 and streaming audio content running at 128 Kbps2 , to predictions by 2020 of 30 billion connected devices and streaming 4K video running at 25 Mbps3 , enterprises have struggled with architecting and supporting this growth.
  • A1A49B8B-5D80-4C0C-9DBB-88D27D401C49 Created with sketchtool.

    Evaluating the New 802.11ax WiFi Standard and What It Will Mean for Enterprises

    WiFi is an integral part of nearly every business. The pervasive nature of mobile devices, combined with the ever-growing array of applications and services being accessed, puts tremendous strain on all organizations looking to deploy secure and scalable WiFi networks.
  • A1A49B8B-5D80-4C0C-9DBB-88D27D401C49 Created with sketchtool.

    R750 - Indoor Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) Access Point For Ultra-Dense Environments

    The R750 is based on the latest Wi-Fi 6 standard and bridges the performance gap from ‘gigabit’ Wi-Fi to ‘multi-gigabit’ WiFi in support of the insatiable demand for better and faster Wi-Fi. The R750 is the first Wi-Fi 6 AP to be certified by Wi-Fi Alliance as Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6. As part of the Wi-Fi Alliance testbed, the R750 validates other devices for Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 interoperability.
  • A1A49B8B-5D80-4C0C-9DBB-88D27D401C49 Created with sketchtool.

    Ruckus R730 Data Sheet

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The New 802.11ax Standard

Provides an overview of 802.11ax, the latest sixth generation WiFi standard (also referred to as WiFi 6 or high efficiency WiFi), that focuses on maximizing network efficiency and not just the peak throughput.

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