To simplify both marketing and consumers needs, the Wi-Fi Alliance announced that the upcoming 802.11ax standard will be renamed. Moving forward, the standard is now known as Wi-Fi 6 which is rather apt since it is the sixth iteration of the main 802.11 WLAN standards.
Quoting Edgar Figueroa, president and CEO of Wi-Fi Alliance,” For nearly two decades, Wi-Fi users have had to sort through technical naming conventions to determine if their devices support the latest Wi-Fi. Wi-Fi Alliance is excited to introduce Wi-Fi 6, and present a new naming scheme to help industry and Wi-Fi users easily understand the Wi-Fi generation supported by their device or connection.”
The new naming convention will also apply retroactively to older standards in order to allow easy identification of the products with associated Wi-Fi protocols. Vendors will now be able to use the following to identify its products:
- Wi-Fi 6 to identify devices that support 802.11ax technology
- Wi-Fi 5 to identify devices that support 802.11ac technology
- Wi-Fi 4 to identify devices that support 802.11n technology
Vendors are also expected to include the new Wi-Fi 6 logos in products and software UI starting from next year. The first Wi-Fi 6 products are expected to arrive on store shelves in 2019.