The US Federal Communications Commission has voted to open a section of frequencies in the 6 GHz band for unlicensed use. This means that home routers will get more open radio waves for transmitting Wi-Fi signals, in addition to the already existing 2.4 and 5 GHz bands.
The spectrum expansion was the largest major Wi-Fi upgrade since frequency clearing in 1989. The new generation of wireless technology â€” Wi-Fi 6E-will be used in the released range.
The 6-gigahertz range provides a comparable theoretical data exchange rate with Wi-Fi at 5 GHz â€” up to 9.6 Gbit/s. At the same time, according to The Verge, the new spectrum quadruples the number of available channels, which will provide much more bandwidth and reduce interference between intersecting signals. The new range has enough space to accommodate up to seven Wi-Fi streams with maximum bandwidth, which can be broadcast in parallel and not overlap each other.
"This is the most monumental decision regarding the Wi-Fi spectrum in its history over the past 20 years," said Kevin Robinson, Director of Marketing for the Wi-Fi Alliance. This industry organization regulates all issues related to the implementation of new Wi-Fi standards.
According to Robinson, the first devices with support for the 6-gigahertz band are expected by the end of the year. They will be widely available in early 2021 when the Wi-Fi Alliance launches a certification program for products that support Wi-Fi 6E.
The chip for mobile devices with Wi-Fi support 6E has already been developed by Broadcom. Qualcomm also announced its readiness to support the new standard, and Intel promised to release Wi-Fi-compatible 6E chips by January 2021.