When WiFi 6 and 5G collide

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We discuss the following topics in this blog:

  1. Limitless possibilities with WiFi 6.
  2. WiFi 6 and 5G for high-speed connectivity.

In addition to these topics, we shall also be answering the following FAQs:

  1. What is WiFi?
  2. What is an Optical FIbre Cable?

Is Sky the Limit for WiFi 6?

Picture this scene from The Olympics 2024. You’ve bought tickets to a much-anticipated basketball match. Your friend partook of some lovely Parisian concoctions at a pleasant roadside café the previous day which unfortunately lead to some unpleasant effects. You feel bad leaving him at the hotel but you’ve been counting days until you can watch this match live for several months now. Fortunately for him, you are now able to capture the entire match in HD and stream it live to him at the hotel.

The next best thing to being Really There? We think so. Imagine also the possibility of the match being captured live by every one of the 10,000 devices in the stadium through high-speed wireless connections with the audience recording it in high definition and replaying their favourite moments over and over again.

All of this is thanks to WiFi 6. In terms of connectivity, the reach, the convenience and the accessibility, WiFi 6 has the potential to change the game for wireless connectivity as we know it. Today, even with the spiffiest of wireless networks, we still struggle with connectivity especially in crowded and densely populated areas such as stadiums, hotels or airports. The next generation of wireless networks, WiFi 6 is expected to bring the capability of connecting many more devices to one access point, along with faster data speeds and quicker response times.

Imagine downloading all 10 seasons of “Friends” in a matter of minutes. Or playing a Massively Multiplayer Online Game with a large gaming group in Virtual Reality at a consistently high speeds, without any lag.  Yes, that familiar buffering Circle of Nothingness will soon be a thing of past.

How Can WiFi 6 Complement the Capabilities of 5G?

Talking about speed, it would be interesting to see how WiFi 6 can complement or rather enhance the capabilities provided by 5G. With both technologies set to become mainstream by the end of this year, it would lead to the creation of a connectivity ecosystem characterised by limitless speeds and the capacity to handle a number of devices, concurrently.

Considering the possibilities that WiFi 6 will offer in the age of 5G, DSPs can explore multiple avenues for revenue generation, provided they are willing to make investments to utilise WiFi 6 optimally. The capability, coverage and performance that WiFi 6 offers will help create multiple use cases across different revenue streams including IoT, Industry 4.0 and connected vehicles.

Together, 5G and WiFi 6 bring a promise of dramatically better performance to carriers and enterprises. They will provide higher data rates to support new applications and increases in network capacity with the ability to connect more devices while offering superior user experience. This is a win-win for all and we believe the opportunities for both revenue generation and customer adoption are limitless.

If you would like to have a conversation with us on how WiFi 6 and 5G can open up revenue streams while enabling superior user experience, write to us at sales@sterlite.com

FAQs

What is WiFi?

Put simply, WiFi is a technology that uses radio waves to create a wireless network through which devices like mobile phones, computers, printers, etc., connect to the internet. A wireless router is needed to establish a WiFi hotspot that people in its vicinity may use to access internet services. You’re sure to have encountered such a WiFi hotspot in houses, offices, restaurants, etc.

To get a little more technical, WiFi works by enabling a Wireless Local Area Network or WLAN that allows devices connected to it to exchange signals with the internet via a router. The frequencies of these signals are either 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz bandwidths. These frequencies are much higher than those transmitted to or by radios, mobile phones, and televisions since WiFi signals need to carry significantly higher amounts of data. The networking standards are variants of 802.11, of which there are several (802.11a, 802.11b, 801.11g, etc.).

What is an Optical Fibre Cable?

An optical fibre cable is a cable type that has a few to hundreds of optical fibres bundled together within a protective plastic coating. They help carry digital data in the form of light pulses across large distances at faster speeds. For this, they need to be installed or deployed either underground or aerially. Standalone fibres cannot be buried or hanged so fibres are bunched together as cables for the transmission of data.

This is done to protect the fibre from stress, moisture, temperature changes and other externalities. There are three main components of a optical fibre cable, core (It carries the light and is made of pure silicon dioxide (SiO2) with dopants such as germania, phosphorous pentoxide, or alumina to raise the refractive index; Typical glass cores range from as small as 3.7um up to 200um), Cladding (Cladding surrounds the core and has a lower refractive index than the core, it is also made from the same material as the core; 1% refractive index difference is maintained between the core and cladding; Two commonly used diameters are 125µm and 140µm) and Coating (Protective layer that absorbs shocks, physical damage and moisture; The outside diameter of the coating is typically either 250µm or 500µm; Commonly used material for coatings are acrylate,Silicone, carbon, and polyimide).

An optical fibre cable is made up of the following components: Optical fibres – ranging from one to many. Buffer tubes (with different settings), for protection and cushioning of the fibre. Water protection in the tubes – wet or dry. A central strength member (CSM) is the backbone of all cables. Armoured tapes for stranding to bunch the buffer tubes and strength members together. Sheathing or final covering to provide further protection.

The five main reasons that make this technology innovation disruptive are fast communication speed, infinite bandwidth & capacity, low interference, high tensile strength and secure communication. The major usescases of optical fibre cables include intenet connectivity, computer networking, surgery & dentistry, automotive industry, telephony, lighting & decorations, mechanical inspections, cable television, military applications and space.

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