|Wi-Fi 4||Wi-Fi 5||Wi-Fi 6 / 6E||Wi-Fi 7|
|Launch||2007||2013||2019 / 2021||2024|
|Max rate||1.2 Gbps||3.5 Gbps||9.6 Gbps||46 Gbps|
|Bands||2.4 GHz and 5 GHz||5GHz||2.4 and 5 GHz / 6 GHz||1-7.25 GHz|
|Security||WPA 2||WPA 2||WPA 3||WPA 3|
|Channel size (MHz)||20, 40||20,40,80, 80+80, 160||20,40,80, 80+80, 160||Up to 320|
|Modulation||64-QAM, OFDM||256-QAM, OFDM||1024-QAM, OFDMA||4096-QAM, OFDMA|
|MIMO||4x4 MIMO||4x4 MIMO, DL MU-MIMO||8x8 UL/DL MU-MIMO||16x16 MU-MIMO|
Wi-Fi 6 vs Wi-Fi 5
The current generation is Wifi 5, or IEEE 802.11ac. The next generation is Wifi 6, or IEEE 802.11ax.
- Wifi 6 is faster than Wifi 5, but may not be that obvious.
- The true difference is that Wifi 6 can support more devices
- MU-MIMO, or "multi-user, multiple input, multiple output", is upgraded from 4 devices to 8 devices
- OFDMA, or "Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access", allows one transmission to deliver data to multiple devices at once.
- Improve battery life, especially for low-power, IoT devices.
- Better security: WPA3
Wi-Fi 6 vs Wi-Fi 6E
- Wi-Fi 6: 2.4GHz and 5GHz
- Wi-Fi 6E: add 6GHz band, providing 5x more channels (14 80MHz channels and 7 160MHz channels)
You would need BOTH Wifi 6 routers AND Wifi 6 devices to take full advantages of it.
Devices: Some motherboards have Wifi chips built-in, otherwise you can buy a PCIe Wifi card or USB Wifi Adaptor.