Successful Wi-Fi 6 Deployment to Customer Homes: A Service Provider’s Guide to Intelligently Controlling And Optimizing the Wi-Fi 6 Home Network (2021)

By Bill McFarland, Plume Design, Inc.

Hailed as a new era for Wi-Fi connectivity, 802.11ax—known better as Wi-Fi 6—has created much excitement and anticipation. Capable of more than doubling the speeds of its predecessor, 802.11ac (or Wi-Fi 5), Wi-Fi 6 promises to transform the home network.

As well as boosting throughputs, this new technology improves overall system capacity, security, and even power consumption and battery life. And the timing couldn't be better. Not only are consumers relying on home Wi-Fi more than ever, but the smart home is also evolving to include more connected devices, immersive experiences, and bandwidth-hungry applications.

The Wi-Fi Alliance anticipates nearly 2 billion Wi-Fi 6 devices to be shipped in 2021 to consumers andorganizations.1 Wi-Fi 6 products entering the market will spark renewed consumer interest in Wi-Fi upgrades, including deployments of Wi-Fi 6 home networks. It's an exciting opportunity for Communications Service Providers (CSPs) to elevate their offerings to subscribers.

There's no doubt that the new capabilities of Wi-Fi 6 will improve the user experience in all connected spaces. But maximizing its full potential means optimizing Wi-Fi networks in ways that are both more critical and more complex.

Wi-Fi 6 connectivity in any space is only as good as the system controlling it. To deliver on the promise of this new technology for their customers, CSPs must understand the limitations of Wi-Fi 6 home deployments and the requirements for intelligently managing the networks.

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