Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6™ Program launches: Intel products are ready

A new era of Wi-Fi is here and ready for certification. In support of the biggest leap forward in wireless technology in more than a decade, the Wi-Fi Alliance (WFA) today announced the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 program is now available. As a longtime advocate and active participant in wireless standards and interoperability programs, Intel is proud to be part of the test bed for Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 with both client and access point solutions. We have worked alongside the WFA and IEEE on the development of Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) since its inception and celebrate today’s latest milestone.

Interoperability Is the Key to the Best Experiences

Consumers want more secure Wi-Fi technology and the confidence in compatibility for new and existing devices that delivers on the full promise of the Wi-Fi 6 experience. Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 distinguishes the Wi-Fi 6 products and networks that meet the latest standard for security and interoperability. With both the Intel® Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) AX200 (for PC and IoT) as well as the Intel® Home Wi-Fi Chipset WAV600 Series (for routers and gateways) in the test bed, we are focused on enabling the best end-to-end experience from device to network.

In addition to achieving certification, Intel optimized testing and fine-tuning in key areas to further enhance performance and security as network congestion increases due to the growing volumes of data transfer.

Better Connectivity in Network Congestion

Wi-Fi 6 is a boon for the modern home where more devices rely on Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 products are tested for interoperability in dense home networks and crowded venues where spectrum is leveraged to deliver peak network service simultaneously to devices. With more efficient use of the spectrum, devices realize an ultrafast, reliable and responsive connection at lower latency. For Intel’s certified products, we performed additional testing to validate improvements in gigabit throughput between the client and access point for optimal performance under a broad range of conditions with varying interferences and competition for airtime.

Delivering Intelligent Connections

Under the new Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) standard, bandwidth provisioning and management allow for end-to-end data transmission scheduling via downlink and uplink OFDMA as well as downlink MU-MIMO and MU flows at the home router or gateway. As more bandwidth capacity enables devices to transmit more data packets simultaneously, certification validates device interoperability showing that both access point and client will drive performance and network efficiency improvements for better throughput and latency reductions in the end user experience. Intel did additional interoperability testing for intelligent scheduling among a diverse mix of clients – ones with Intel technology and ones with other technology - to verify the right prioritized quality of service and seamless support across both new and legacy clients, including 802.11b/g/n/ac. Uplink and downlink channel efficiency is a cornerstone for Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 and sets a baseline for continued evolution in latency performance and new service enhancements over time.

Guaranteed Security Protocol Support

Along with basic interoperability measures, Wi-Fi 6 brings an update to the WPA2 standard for assurances that today’s security threats will be addressed without disruption to connectivity. Wi-Fi Protected Access 3, or WPA3, is the latest iteration of the WFA’s security certification program and provides new authentication and encryption features for personal and enterprise use. Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 supports enhanced security protocols further complemented by Intel’s Security-First Pledge.

Intel Delivers Wi-Fi 6 Firsts

Ahead of certification, Intel was the first to deliver enhanced Gig+ Wi-Fi performance at nearly 3x faster2 speeds, up to 75 percent lower latency3 and 4x increase in capacity4 in a more secure environment. Intel® Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+)1 solutions for PCs and home routers and gateways enable 160 MHz channel bandwidth for true gigabit speeds.

Globally, we are seeing growing momentum for Wi-Fi 6. By the end of 2019, we expect hundreds of new PCs to be equipped with Intel Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) as a configuration option. That includes new laptops and sleek 2-in-1 PC platforms based on 8th, 9th and 10th Generation Intel Core mobile processors. On the home infrastructure side, NETGEAR and TP-Link are shipping Intel-based Wi-Fi 6 Gig+ routers and AVM, ELECOM and Edimax announced they will delivery routers and gateways later this year.  On the service provider front, preparations leading up to certification in Europe included a first-time test by Türk Telekom of Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) technology – using an Intel-based Wi-Fi 6 Gig+ access point connected to PCs with Intel Wi-Fi 6 Gig+ - that achieved superior performance compared to both traditional wired speeds and previous-generation wireless connection speeds.

Now Is the Time for a Wi-Fi Upgrade

The arrival of Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 promises exciting new possibilities for Wi-Fi 6 Gig+ PCs on the go, at the office and all devices on a Wi-Fi 6 Gig+-based home network. Championed by industry and underpinning the future of interoperability, the Wi-Fi 6 standard supported by a significant and robust certification program helps accelerate a wave of wireless technology refresh for PCs and home networking routers and gateways.

Learn about Intel’s latest Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 solutions at intel.com/wireless.

  1. Best-in-class Wi-Fi 6: Intel® Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) products support optional 160 MHz channels, enabling the fastest possible theoretical maximum speeds (2402 Mbps) for typical 2×2 802.11 AX PC Wi-Fi products. Premium Intel® Wi-Fi 6 (Gig+) products enable 2-4x faster maximum theoretical speeds compared to standard 2×2 (1201 Mbps) or 1×1 (600 Mbps) 802.11ax PC Wi-Fi products, which only support the mandatory requirement of 80 MHz channels.
  2. Nearly 3x Faster: 802.11ax 2x2 160MHz enables 2402Mbps maximum theoretical data rates, ~3x (2.8x) faster than standard 802.11ac 2x2 80MHz (867Mbps) as documented in IEEE 802.11 wireless standard specifications, and require the use of similarly configured 802.11ax wireless network routers.
  3. 75% latency reduction: is based on Intel simulation data (79%) of 802.11ax with and without OFDMA, using nine clients. Average latency without OFDM is 36ms, with OFDMA average latency reduced to 7.6ms. Latency improvement requires that the 802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) router and all clients support OFDMA.
  4. 4x capacity/scalability: This claim is based on a comparison of overall network capacity for similarly sized 802.11ax vs. 802.11ac networks. The IEEE 802.11-14/0165r1 802.11 AX specification amendment defines standardized modifications to both the IEEE 802.11 physical layers (PHY) and the IEEE 802.11 Medium Access Control (MAC) layer that enable at least one mode of operation capable of supporting at least 4x improvement in the average throughput per station (measured at the MAC data service access point) in a dense deployment scenario, while maintaining or improving the power efficiency per station. For additional details, visit: https://mentor.ieee.org/802.11/dcn/14/11-14-0165-01-0hew-802-11-hew-sg-proposed-par.docx
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Doron Tal

About Doron Tal

Doron Tal is the General Manager of the Wireless Infrastructure Group in Intel’s Smart & Connected Home Division. He brings over 20 years of experience in networking semiconductors and broadband access. Doron joined Intel in 2016 to lead a platform product marketing team for connected home infrastructure products. Under Doron’s leadership, the team focused on increasing the attach rate of Wi-Fi technology to connected home platforms across retail, cable and telco segments. Prior to Intel, Doron led Broadcom’s Fiber Access business and was previously the vice president of marketing and business development at BroadLight which was acquired by Broadcom in 2012.