WiFi 6-E is adding a new 6 GHz band to WiFi 6's (2.4GHz & 5 GHz) bands

poolmon

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I ran across this interesting video that explains the upcoming addition of a 6 GHz band to WiFi's current 2.4 GHz & 5 GHz bands.
It gives the pluses and minuses of each of the three bands and clears up the confusion of WiFi 6 vs WiFi 6-E.

 

poolmon

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The FCC gave final approval yesterday to add the 6 GHz band to existing the WFi 6 standard, creating the new WiFI 6-E standard which will have 3 bands 2.4 GHz, 5GHz & 6 Ghz.

 

jdong

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This will be great! 6GHZ is a huge piece of spectrum and requires wifi 6 to use. That will forever be a limitation of 5GHz and 2.4GHz -- on one end you have devices that can transmit at 1gbit. On the other end you have devices that can transmit only at 11mbit/s (802.11b). All of them have to share the same airspace. Every millisecond that a 802.11b device is occupying a channel is time lost to an 802.11ax client capable of transmitting 50-100x more data during that millisecond.


But OTOH you will also need brand new devices with Wifi 6e support in order to use that spectrum. It will take time for the market to get there.
 

STS-134

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This will be great! 6GHZ is a huge piece of spectrum and requires wifi 6 to use. That will forever be a limitation of 5GHz and 2.4GHz -- on one end you have devices that can transmit at 1gbit. On the other end you have devices that can transmit only at 11mbit/s (802.11b). All of them have to share the same airspace. Every millisecond that a 802.11b device is occupying a channel is time lost to an 802.11ax client capable of transmitting 50-100x more data during that millisecond.
That's true, but 802.11b never operated on the 5 GHz band. Maximum data rate for 802.11a on 5 GHz was 54 Mbps, and 802.11a's modulation scheme was essentially ported over to the 2.4 GHz band as 802.11g.
 

jdong

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That's true, but 802.11b never operated on the 5 GHz band. Maximum data rate for 802.11a on 5 GHz was 54 Mbps, and 802.11a's modulation scheme was essentially ported over to the 2.4 GHz band as 802.11g.
Yes but the 802.11a usage of 5GHz is still pretty unfortunate. Same thing applies, just 54 vs 2400mbps.

Remember too the 54mbit signaling rate was a 1/2 scheme so at best 50% of that is real data as opposed to signaling bits. Newer 802.11ax schemes give you close to 5/6 signaling efficiency.
 

STS-134

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Yes but the 802.11a usage of 5GHz is still pretty unfortunate. Same thing applies, just 54 vs 2400mbps.
Actually, 802.11b's minimum data rate was 1 Mbps; 802.11a's minimum data rate was 6 Mbps. So the worst case scenario (on 2.4 GHz) is a client transmitting at 1 Mbps and the worst case scenario on 5 GHz is a client transmitting at 6 Mbps. Of course you can get rid of this issue by not allowing 11b/11a traffic on your AP. There aren't many 11b/11a only clients out there anyway and if there are, they probably shouldn't be used anymore. And you did a pretty good job explaining why yesterday. It's bad enough if a device doesn't get security updates for a few months. Those things haven't gotten security updates for years.

Remember too the 54mbit signaling rate was a 1/2 scheme so at best 50% of that is real data as opposed to signaling bits. Newer 802.11ax schemes give you close to 5/6 signaling efficiency.
Well 802.11b @ 1 Mbps was 11 chips/bit. I remember debugging something in grad school where the antenna was being disconnected too early (before the end of the packet) and there wasn't any way for the Intersil 11b chipset to properly decode an 11Mbps (1chip/bit) signal. But 1 Mbps was just fine, because it was only corrupting the last few chips and with 11 chips/bit, it could still figure out what the last bit was.
 
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jdong

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Actually, 802.11b's minimum data rate was 1 Mbps; 802.11a's minimum data rate was 6 Mbps. So the worst case scenario (on 2.4 GHz) is a client transmitting at 1 Mbps and the worst case scenario on 5 GHz is a client transmitting at 6 Mbps. Of course you can get rid of this issue by not allowing 11b/11a traffic on your AP. There aren't many 11b/11a only clients out there anyway and if there are, they probably shouldn't be used anymore. And you did a pretty good job explaining why yesterday. It's bad enough if a device doesn't get security updates for a few months. Those things haven't gotten security updates for years.
Even if you don't allow such rates on your AP, unfortunately, you cannot stop others from using the channel in this way, or repeatedly failing to transmit at these low rates.

But yeah in some of the enterprise settings I've looked at, exclusive 802.11ac channels like channel 144 (20MHz) are significantly cleaner because legacy clients cannot go on them at all. I expect us to see similar benefits with Wifi6e.
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It's worth mentioning that not even 802.11ax fixes all of these issues. If a broken client and AP want to occupy a large part of the spectrum they still can.

It's more that when you have a pretty good idea that 100% of your clients are 802.11ax-capable, they are more likely to work together efficiently than on 5GHz when today maybe only 5% or fewer clients and APs are Wifi 6 capable and the vast majority is either 802.11ac or earlier.
 
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