Qualcomm unveils the next generation of Wi-Fi chips

Though its specification hasn't yet been finalized, Qualcomm has already announced a pair of chips that would be compatible with 802.11ax Wi-Fi solutions, should little change from the already announced draft of the spec. The 802.11ac's focus is mostly on maximum speed, while the 802.11ax gives priority to network capacity and the manner data is transferred to multiple devices.

The actual timeline for product arrival is, of course, still unknown, but to give you some idea, ABI Research has previously predicted that by 2021, 802.11ax will account for nearly 60% of Wi-Fi chipsets across the globe. Merely created to meet the rapidly increased demands of the crowded and dense Wi-Fi environment.

802.11ax vs 802.11ac: What's the difference?

Additionally, the solutions feature proven cellular techniques, such as Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access (OFDMA) and traffic scheduling, which is created to provide greater efficiency, higher user throughput, and a more consistent performance. It's created to give better performance in tough situations people encounter in the real world, such as environments with many competing Wi-Fi networks.

"CAPACITY - NOT PEAK SPEED - HAS BECOME THE MOST IMPORTANT MEASURE OF A NETWORK'S ABILITY TO HANDLE THE EVER-INCREASING DEMANDS OF TODAY'S DIVERSE MIX OF APPLICATIONS AND SERVICES", said SVP of Connectivity Rahul Patel.

The new silicon uses an early version of IEEE 802.11ax, a specification created to make wireless LANs more efficient and increase their performance as a result.

Wi-Fi is now an essential element of every corporate, education, service provider and public network. IT executives are reporting their biggest challenges are capacity and scalability, given the enormous growth of users.

New products like the upcoming IPQ8074 and QCA6290 chips will grant the user with significantly enhanced Wi-Fi signals, increased range, and longer lifetime in their routers and devices. Qualcomm's IPQ8074 quadruples capacity by utilizing a 12x12 configuration, uplink and downlink MU-MIMO, and by supporting eight 80Mhz streams.

The successor to 802.11ac will not only improve speeds over wireless networks, but 802.11ax will focus on delivering better performance in crowded environments where there's lots of Wi-Fi traffic that could otherwise bog things down (such as apartment blocks or offices). IPQ8074 is similar to Quantenna QSR10G-AX, it also has a 12-stream solution and first Qualcomm's 802.11ax solution. The chip can combine 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands using its Dual Band Simultaneous (DBS) feature to deliver up to 1.8 Gbps Wi-Fi speed. "The technology will reset the bar for what matters most in networking, and will lay the foundation of network capacity for years to come".

  • Ernesto Newman