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Home Wi-Fi 7 what are its features and how does it work? How fast is it? How does it work? Here's everything you need to know

Wi-Fi 7 what are its features and how does it work? How fast is it? How does it work? Here's everything you need to know

Wi-Fi technology is one of the modern innovations that enable us to connect to the Internet efficiently, and with the increasing demand for high-quality wireless connection speeds, the technology comes in its seventh version, Wi-Fi 7, to meet those needs. In this article, we'll take a look at the features of Wi-Fi 7 and how it can improve connection performance.

What is Wi-Fi 7?  How fast is it? And how does it work? Here's everything you need to know

Wi-Fi 7: a recent development in Wi-Fi technology to improve connectivity performance

While many individuals have recently upgraded to Wi-Fi 6 or Wi-Fi 6E, the successor to these standards has already arrived. Wi-Fi 7 network represents the significant next step, and like its predecessors, it promises faster connections, reduced latency, and the ability to securely handle more communications.

Wi-Fi 7: what is it?

Wi-Fi 7 represents the seventh generation of Wi-Fi technology, and is based on the IEEE 802.11be technical standard. Introduced after the sixth edition, launched in 2019, it became officially available in 2024, following the completion of certification and testing processes carried out by the Wi-Fi Alliance.

Features of Wi-Fi 7:

Wi-Fi 7 boasts exceptional speed and efficiency, making it more reliable than its predecessors. It includes the latest technological enhancements that improve wireless communication performance, and among these features are:
  • Increased Bandwidth: Wi-Fi 7 supports the use of channels with a width of 320 megahertz in the 6 gigahertz frequency range. This enables the transfer of larger amounts of data at speeds of up to 40 gigabits per second.
  • Multi-Link Operation: The Multi-Link Operation (MLO) feature allows devices to send and receive data simultaneously using multiple links. This means that a single device can connect to multiple access points in various frequency ranges, such as 2.4 gigahertz, 5 gigahertz, and 6 gigahertz. These links are used harmoniously to enhance productivity, reduce latency, and improve connection reliability.
  • Multi-User Support: It supports Multi-User, Multiple Input, Multiple Output (MU-MIMO) technology, enabling the synchronous transfer of data to multiple devices at the same time. This means that Wi-Fi 7 can support a larger number of users and devices on the same network without affecting performance or speed.
  • Coding Improvement: It supports Quadrature Amplitude Modulation with a precision of 4K (QAM-4096), allowing accelerated data transfer rates in each symbol. This enables Wi-Fi 7 to achieve higher data transfer rates and increased efficiency.
With these features, Wi-Fi 7 provides significant improvements in wireless communication performance, making it a promising future option to meet the expectations of users and organizations.

How does Wi-Fi 7 technology work?

Wi-Fi 7 relies on transmitting and receiving data between devices and access points using radio waves. However, it excels with advanced technologies that enhance performance, efficiency, and reliability. Among these technologies are:
  1. Broad Channels: Wi-Fi 7 allows the use of channels with a width of 320 megahertz in the 6 gigahertz wireless frequency range. This leads to a wider bandwidth and higher speed compared to narrower channels in other ranges. This enables Wi-Fi 7 to transfer larger amounts of data in less time, increasing the connection speed to 40 gigabits per second.
  2. Multi-Link Operation: Wi-Fi 7 supports the Multi-Link Operation (MLO) feature, allowing devices to transmit and receive data simultaneously using multiple links. This means that a single device can connect to multiple points of contact.
Wi-Fi 7

How does Wi-Fi 7 compare to Wi-Fi 6E?

You may understandably wonder about the differences between Wi-Fi 7 and Wi-Fi 6E, as the two generally promise the same advantages over previous standards by opening up the 6GHz band. Especially since Wi-Fi 7 will use the same three bands: 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, and 6 GHz. Here are some notable upgrades:

Wider Channels 

Each band is divided into channels. The 2.4 GHz band consists of 11 channels with a width of 20 MHz each. The 5 GHz band has 45 channels, but instead of being limited to 20 MHz, it can combine to create channels with a width of 40 MHz or 80 MHz. The 6GHz band supports 60 channels, and with Wi-Fi 6E it can be up to 160MHz wide. Wi-Fi supports 7 channels with a width of up to 320 MHz. The wider the channel, the more data it can transfer.

Multi-Link Operation

Perhaps the most exciting advancement in Wi-Fi 7 is the Multi-Link Operation (MLO). Each previous Wi-Fi standard created a connection between two devices on a single band. Even the tri-band Wi-Fi 6E router connected two devices on a single band on a fixed channel (the router decided whether to connect on the 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, or 6 GHz band).

MLO can combine multiple frequencies across systems into a single connection. A Wi-Fi 7 router can connect to a Wi-Fi 7 device across two or more channels in different systems simultaneously. Ultimately, MLO can enable wider channels capable of transmitting more data — to go back to the highway analogy, you can send traffic on the highway and the express lane at the same time.

Speed isn't always the top priority, but MLO also allows for more efficient performance. A Wi-Fi 7 router can take congestion and other interference into account and switch to the best channel to overcome it, maintaining a stable connection with low latency. MLO can also help alleviate the relatively short-range of the 6 GHz frequency band, ensuring you get seamless connectivity from the mesh network system as you move around your home.

Higher QAM technology

Modifying the Frequency with Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM) is a method for transmitting and receiving data in radio waves. The higher its value, the more capacity there is to pack in information. Wi-Fi 7 supports 4K-QAM, while Wi-Fi 6 supported 1,024-QAM, and Wi-Fi 5 was limited to 256-QAM.

The potential benefits are complicated by signal strength, background noise, and interference. Consequently, as the QAM value increases, the range decreases, requiring a stronger signal. Therefore, the leap to 1,024-QAM in Wi-Fi 6 offered an increase of around 25 percent in data transfer rate over Wi-Fi 5. Transitioning to 4K-QAM in Wi-Fi 7 translates to a 20 percent increase in peak performance.

Wi-Fi 7 also enhances existing technologies such as OFDMA, MU-MIMO, and TWT.
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