WiFi 7 Is Coming: What Changes Will It Bring?

WiFi 7

More and more devices require large amounts of data transmission, which poses a huge challenge to the current capabilities of WiFi. WiFi rises to this challenge with 802.11be, or WiFi 7.

Billions of people use Wi-Fi every day, and Wi-Fi carries most of the world’s data traffic in an ever-expanding variety of applications. By 2023, there will be nearly 628 million public WiFi hotspots, and one in ten will be equipped with WiFi 6 based on the IEEE 802.11ax specification.

The popularity and functionality of WiFi grow. So the demand for wireless services grows as well. In addition to 8K displays and VR, more and more homes will use smart appliances, which will become a dense environment with many devices connected together at the same time. Businesses will dramatically increase the amount of data collected at their premises, improving manufacturing processes and increasing productivity.

WiFi 7 Advantages

Importantly, this cross-plant communication provides very low latency for machinery synchronization and real-time control. Real-time video will account for a large portion of global IP traffic, and high-quality video conferencing will be widely used in fields such as work, education, and medical care after the pandemic.

As you understand, our requirements for high speed and reliability have driven the development of the next-generation WiFi 7 based on IEEE 802.11be Extreme Throughput (EHT).

WiFi 7

In fact, the extremely high throughput of 802.11be will far exceed the high peak data rates. WiFi 7 is expected to support at least 30Gbps per AP, roughly four times that of WiFi 6, while ensuring backward compatibility and coexistence with legacy devices in the 2.4GHz, 5GHz, and 6GHz bands. However, the 802.11be Task Group (TG) also recognizes the need and is committed to reducing latency and improving reliability to enable Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN) use cases. The former is seen as an enabler for real-time applications, including augmented and virtual reality, gaming, and cloud computing, requiring latency reductions below 5 milliseconds. The latter is critical for next-generation factories and businesses, where WiFi may need to guarantee higher reliability to replace some wired communications.

According to TheNextWeb, the theoretical peak network speed of Wi-Fi 7 can reach 46Gbps. However, considering the transmission, interference, and other obstacles, it is expected that the final actual peak speed after commercial use will be around 40Gbps. In other words, a 4K Blu-Ray movie that has a size of 25Gb will be downloaded in seconds.

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