Businesses everywhere are feeling the pressure of a growing demand for wireless. In 2014, only 40 percent of total IP traffic originated with non-PC devices, but by 2019 the non-PC share of total IP traffic will grow to 67 percent. - Cisco
To support the overflow of wireless device use, the standard of Wi-Fi is transforming from 802.11n to a newer wireless standard, 802.11ac. The release of 802.11ac technology has allowed for maximum Wi-Fi performance with outstanding improvements in speed, quality, and dependability.
Benefits of 802.11ac
Speed and Throughput
A slow wireless network is frustrating and useless for anyone. When your Wi-Fi connection is slowing down productivity, it’s time for a change. With 802.11ac technology, you can have a robust wireless network and eliminate slow connections.
- 802.11ac supports multiple spatial streams resulting in higher capacity throughput. Wave 1 802.11ac deployments generally consist of 3 spatial streams. Upon the launch of Wave 2 802.11ac products, we may see devices with up to 8 spatial streams, creating an extraordinarily fast Wi-Fi connection.
- Wave 1 802.11ac also supports up to 1.3Gbps PHY rate which is about 3x the speed of 802.11n. With the introduction of Wave 2 products, the performance of 3.47 Gbps in the PHY rate is possible.
- 802.11ac Wave 1 supports up to 80MHz channels which creates a wider “pipe” to send data packets through. This directly impacts the link throughput. Wave 2 allows for 80-80MHz channels or 160MHz channels. The earlier, 802.11n only supported up to 40MHz channel widths.
Speed is unnecessary without a properly functioning system. 802.11ac technology creates reliable wireless connections in even the busiest Wi-Fi user locations.
- Crowded WLAN environments create contention, yet 802.11ac creates an environment in which access points service wireless clients much more efficiently which drives down the contention and channel duty cycle.
- Wireless clients associated with an 802.11ac wireless LAN will receive better performance at 50 feet versus an 802.11n wireless LAN at 50 feet. This could be the difference of 100Mbps on an 802.11n device, versus 200Mbps on an 802.11ac device.
- Wireless Clients move on and off wireless networks much faster with 802.11ac Wave 2, which allows more clients’ access to the WLAN. This may also reduce the amount of time a client’s transmit and receive chain is operational, thus creating the possibility for longer battery life on wireless clients.
Now that Wi-Fi has the ability to provide voice, video, and analytics, businesses rely on their wireless network for much more than just an internet connection. Network downtime can result in millions of lost revenue, but with the new features 802.11ac wireless technology brings to the table, businesses no longer need to worry about an unpredictable or unreliable network.
- Multiuser MIMO (MU-MIMO 802.11ac Wave 2) provides concurrent downstream communications to multiple devices allowing for more efficient use of the 5GHz spectrum. MU-MIMO was not available with 802.11n.
- Through a clearly defined Transmit Beamforming standard in 802.11ac, users will experience an increase in the signal strength at the client end of a wireless link. The 802.11n standard supported beamforming, yet it was inconsistently deployed.
Why 802.11ac technology?
With the growing demand for a reliable Wi-Fi connection, customers and employees are expecting a network that is readily available. 802.11ac wireless LAN helps ensure that your Wi-Fi network stays up and running optimally at all times, and decreases the possibility of lost productivity because of a slow network. 802.11ac technology promises your business the speed, quality, and dependability it needs to keep up with the new generations of wirelessly connected devices.