IoT Product Manager’s Guide to Wi-Fi 6, 6E
March 15, 2022
Over the past 20 years Wi-Fi has evolved from 2 Mbps to gigabit speeds, a 1000-fold increase in throughput. The standard has advanced through the introduction of new technologies with Wi-Fi 4, Wi-Fi 5 and, most recently, Wi-Fi 6 and 6E. During this evolution, the Wi-Fi Alliance has maintained impressive backwards compatibility so products work with a wide variety of routers installed in people’s
homes, and this has been a key driver for the stability and growth of Wi-Fi as the cornerstone of the IoT.
As the standards evolve, the process of choosing the right Wi-Fi version for Internet of Things (IoT)
products continue to require careful consideration. While adding Wi-Fi 6 to a smartphone may be an easy decision, the considerations in IoT products are often different with an intense focus on reliability, range/congestion, adoption of the new standard in Wi-Fi routers, cost, security, and power consumption. As a product manager, you have to decide for each new product, which version of Wi-Fi should I use?
When should I use Wi-Fi 4, 5, or 6? When is the right time to update my products?
This whitepaper is a guide for key considerations on Wi-Fi 6 to help you with that decision, providing information on the standard, its history, the technology improvements specifically for IoT products, and the information you need to know on how Wi-Fi 6 routers are expected to evolve. This whitepaper
also provides criteria for what you, as a product manager or system designer, will need to consider when deciding which Wi-Fi technology to use. We hope that this whitepaper helps you consider the important criteria for when and how to upgrade to Wi-Fi 6 and 6E.