Discussion stats
  • 5 replies
  • 3353 views
  • 2 kudos
  • 5 in conversation
Announcements

Top Contributors
Reply
Highlighted
Community Manager

More Capacity and Better Efficiency with Wi-Fi 6

GettyImages-932628958.jpg

As more and more smart home devices enter the home, the need for an efficient home network becomes vital. Not only do we need our network to support those connected devices, our network needs to support data-intensive apps as well. How does Wi-Fi 6, or 802.11ax, technology help? Features like Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiple Access (OFDMA) and 8X8 MU-MIMO help play a critical role to help improve efficiency and capacity.

 

What is OFDMA?

OFDMA allows your router and devices to use bandwidth more efficiently by reducing the time between data transmissions. As a result, more bandwidth is available for other devices and apps in your network. By reducing contention, you’ll have better bandwidth utilization, a substantial increase in efficiency and reduced latency.

 

What is 8X8 MU-MIMO?

Wi-Fi 6 routers supports up to eight simultaneous streams, or the number of users than can be served at the same time. By having multiple WiFi streams per band, the amount of data the router sends to and receives from devices increases because of more available bandwidth and less congestion.

 

With Wi-Fi 6, the future of Wi-Fi has arrived, and soon enough Wi-Fi 6 supported devices will begin to enter our homes. By leading the New Era of WiFi, NETGEAR’s AX Routers will help prepare your home for the multiple devices and applications that will soon make way to your network.

 

For more info on Wi-Fi 6, please visit:

https://www.netgear.com/landings/ax-wifi/

https://kb.netgear.com/000059637/How-is-Wi-Fi-6-different-from-Wi-Fi-5

 

Message 1 of 6
Highlighted
Guru

Re: More Capacity and Better Efficiency with Wi-Fi 6

All this won't help much if leading edge routers like the AX80 (RAX80) only support a limited number of DFS channels or like the AX12 (RAX120) no DFS channels at all - both as per the current FCC filings. The absence of other mandatory Wi-Fi 6 features was discussed on other Wi-Fi 6 promotion posts. Amazing @duckware  hasn't joined here yet.

Message 2 of 6
Highlighted
Master

Re: More Capacity and Better Efficiency with Wi-Fi 6


@schumaku wrote:

@duckware  hasn't joined here yet.


Smiley Wink

--Bill
ISP Comcast, Modem-Netgear CM1150V, Router-Unifi Security Gateway-Pro4, AP-2 Unifi AP-LR
Tesla > Edison
Message 3 of 6
Highlighted
Virtuoso

Re: More Capacity and Better Efficiency with Wi-Fi 6

Wi-Fi 6 benefits are only for Wi-Fi 6 clients: To obtain the large claimed benefits of Wi-Fi 6, ALL of your clients must be Wi-Fi 6 clients -- and that won't happen for many many years!  A Wi-Fi 6 router switches to prior Wi-Fi 5 or Wi-Fi 4 modes to support older clients (no benefit).

 

Lack of support for all ratified features: Why does Netgear's "/landings/ax-wifi/" web page have this text in the web page just after listing key features of the RAX80 and RAX120?  "The routers do not support all the mandatory features as ratified in Draft 3.0 of IEEE 802.11AX specification."  DRAFT hardware: The RAX80 and RAX120 are DRAFT specification hardware.  The Wi-Fi 6 spec is not yet finalized -- that is expected in late 2019. The hope is that a draft router now can be updated to the full spec via a firmware update, but that requires a lot of faith in Netgear.

 

Netgear’s Wi-Fi 6 speed improvements don't add up: Netgear claims a 20% improvement due to signal encoding and a 25% improvement due to 1024-QAM, which is a 50% improvement (1.20*1.25), but then states a combined 40% improvement.  The fact is that the raw signaling improvement in Wi-Fi 6 (over Wi-Fi 5) is only 10.86% (866.66 Mbps in Wi-Fi 5 improves to 960.78 Mbps in Wi-Fi 6), which is likely the only benefit most people will immediately see because most people will not get 1024-QAM unless they are VERY close to the router, and even then they might not.

 

Netgear is double dipping on speed improvements:  Netgear is claiming the same 25% speed improvement for both Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6.  Look at the Wi-Fi 5 R8500, in which Netgear already claims the speed improvement of 1024-QAM.

 

Netgear's 'stream' claims:  Netgear marketing has changed what 'stream' means in order to market and claim that newer AX routers have a higher 'stream' count.  But then the stream count in older routers (like the R7800) must be adjusted (higher) as well.  All rather crazy.

 

Wi-Fi 6 has a LOT of potential: The fact is that Wi-Fi 6 totally upends the playing field because multi-user support is (now the first time in wifi) baked into the wifi protocols via MU-OFDMA.  Don’t confuse MU-OFDMA with MU-MIMO as they are NOT the same thing. The fact is that Wi-Fi 6 has the POTENTIAL to make a huge difference in highly dense environments (airports, stadiums, schools, etc).  The claim is a 4x improvement in capacity (to everyone in aggregate).  Note the ‘aggregate’ capacity qualification.  In Wi-Fi 6, the maximum speed of a single user will change very little (11%).

 

A reality check:  All the grandiose benefits of Wi-Fi 6 are based so far upon models.  We have to wait until Wi-Fi is deployed to find out if all of the benefits actually pan out and work in the real world.  The same thing happened with Wi-Fi 5 and MU-MIMO.  MU-MIMO is great idea that worked in the lab (and some homes).  But in real world enterprise installations, it did not pan out. Aruba Networks admits "Experience from 802.11ac MU-MIMO in real-world deployments revealed some limitations".

 

Conclusion: Remember, Netgear is trying to sell new hardware!  Take any claims with a grain of salt and do your own research.

Message 4 of 6
Highlighted
Tutor

Re: More Capacity and Better Efficiency with Wi-Fi 6

For a normal household (4 family members with phones, SmartTVs, smart home gadgets, games consoles), do you think that the AC3200 (R8000)  performs the same as the new one RAX40? I'm trying both and found out that the new RAX has some small bugs (like no Disney Circle support - that is a must for me - and Nighthawk app doesn't work correctly) that I'm sure will be solved with another firmware update; the R8000 has been in the market for almost 5 years (older model, but reliable). I'm moving from the C6250 cable modem to use it only as modem; my internet speed is over 200 mbps. I'm not sure what of these 2 to choose. My house is not too big but has 3 levels and it seems that the R8000 has better coverage than the RAX, but the AX is new technology. Your opinion will be great appreciated.

Message 5 of 6
Highlighted
Guru

Re: More Capacity and Better Efficiency with Wi-Fi 6


@Mega69 wrote:

For a normal household (4 family members with phones, SmartTVs, smart home gadgets, games consoles), do you think that the AC3200 (R8000)  performs the same as the new one RAX40?


Comparing a tri-band router like the R8000 with two 5 GHz radios and one 2.4 GHz with a dual band RAX40 is a little bit odd, the RAX200 would be the better sparring partner. There is no "magic" in the RAX40 - for most current 802.11n (2.4 GHz) and 802.11ac (5 GHz) it will perform roughly like yet another dual-band 802.11ac router - plus giving an entry base into the 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) environment.

 


@Mega69 wrote:

I'm trying both and found out that the new RAX has some small bugs (like no Disney Circle support - that is a must for me - ...


That's not a bug - simply not part of the specification. Unclear to me when Disney Circle will make it to the RAX family - if it ever will....

 


@Mega69 wrote:

...and Nighthawk app doesn't work correctly) that I'm sure will be solved with another firmware update; the R8000 has been in the market for almost 5 years (older model, but reliable).


Lot's of hit-and-miss with these Apps I'm afraid...

 


@Mega69 wrote:

My house is not too big but has 3 levels and it seems that the R8000 has better coverage than the RAX, but the AX is new technology.


Depends a little bit on the house construction. For my part, I would invest in installing network cables (CAT6A or better) from a place where you have space to place some equipment and a cable patch panel to each floor, install a good router (no WiFi, e.g. a basic BR500), a PoE switch like a GC110P, and some WAC505 or WAC540 (yes, still 802.11ac only) on each floor - and manage things using Insight. You will never look back.You will win much more than from installing a consumer WiFi router - regardless of the technology. Once the 802.11ax ir really mainstream, convinced there will be Wi-Fi 6 WAC become available, too - and these will be fully standards compliant by then.

 

 

Message 6 of 6