At CES 2022, the Wi-Fi Alliance announced Wi-Fi 6 Release 2, an update to the Wi-Fi 6 standard. The latest release brings several improvements including faster uplink performance, improved power efficiency, and more.
First and foremost, Wi-Fi Certified 6 Release 2 offers greater uplink capacity. It adds support for uplink multi-user MIMO, allowing multiple devices to upload content concurrently to an access point (AP). Uplink multi-user MIMO support enables faster upload speeds and reduces latency for gaming, video conferencing, and IoT devices. In addition, the release also adds new high-speed channels in the 6 GHz spectrum for Wi-Fi 6E, unlocking an even faster and more reliable Wi-Fi experience.
“Wi-Fi delivers advanced capabilities that have driven tremendous global innovation, paving the way for massive growth in Wi-Fi applications that users rely on every day. Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 Release 2 furthers Wi-Fi’s evolution to address today’s market needs, and supports more high-performance Wi-Fi scenarios with greater capacity, efficiency, and reliability,” said Edgar Figueroa, president, and CEO, Wi-Fi Alliance.
Another area of focus is power management. The latest release includes some new power and sleep mode enhancements such as broadcast target wake time (TWT), extended sleep time, and dynamic multi-user spatial multiplexing power save (SMPS). These enhancements will allow devices in Wi-Fi Certified 6 Release 6 networks to receive extended sleep periods, specific wake up times for transmitting data, and allow dynamic shut off of redundant chains for improved power efficiency.
New features introduced in Wi-Fi 6 Release 2 will work across all three bands — 2.4GHz, 5GHz, and 6GHz — supported by the Wi-Fi 6 standard. The new release comes as the adoption of Wi-Fi 6 continues to grow by leaps and bounds. According to the Wi-Fi Alliance, nearly 2 billion Wi-Fi 6 devices are set to enter the market in 2022.
Major industry players such as Broadcom, Intel, Qualcomm, NXP, and onsemi have already pledged support for the new release. First devices supporting Wi-Fi 6 Release 2 are expected to arrive in the first half of 2022.
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