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Will WiFi 6+AI Will Change IT Systems Forever?


The WiFi6 standard is coming, and it’s going to change the industry forever. I believe this to be true because WiFi6 is the first WiFi specification designed specifically for a world where the majority of endpoints will connect wirelessly. In fact, most newer devices don’t have a wired port on them, making WiFi the only option.

This has a profound impact on corporate networks because the presumption for wireless was that it was the secondary network. Companies built rock-solid wired networks and augmented them with WiFi. Wired was considered the performance network and wireless was more for convenience. Not so anymore. Many businesses have built digital transformation services around mobility that depend on WiFi. Consider stadiums that roll out fan applications or schools that use tablets for immersive learning or hotels that are trying to attract more conferences. WiFi is mission-critical, and not all solutions are created equal.

WiFi innovation needs to relieve network manager pain

Unfortunately, the rise in the business value of WiFi is coupled with an increase in management headaches and pain. Historically, WiFi has been notoriously flaky and difficult to troubleshoot. Most workers aren’t very network savvy (although they think they are) and have a hard time articulating what the problem is. Most of the time, people think it’s an association issue, but it could also be roaming problems, DNS, DHCP or RADIUS.

Another issue causing network engineers pain is the growth of IoT. Devices such as point of sale, medical endpoints, kiosks, and autonomous machines are being added to company networks at a furious pace. This is driving the need for greater security and higher-density WiFi.

WiFi 6 solves many of these problems as the standard has a number of new features built into it, such as target wake time, MU-MIMO, BSS coloring, and orthogonal frequency-division multiple access (OFDMA). All of the new features help WiFi perform better through an increase in bandwidth and a reduction in congestion so more clients can connect simultaneously.

However, WiFi 6 isn’t a panacea to all wireless woes. To solve other issues, customers must rely on extended wireless innovation from the vendor community to deliver better integration, automation, visibility, and interoperability.

Looking to upgrade your networking, give the experts a shout.