All new wireless communication standards have one major problem. This is the time needed to spread the new solution. The latest report from the organization ABI Research suggests that Wi-Fi 6 (i.e. the 802.11ax standard) will be adopted on the market of mobile devices faster than 5G.
In the near future we will have a revolution (or perhaps evolution) of chipsets responsible for wireless connectivity. Despite the fact that these systems are often neglected by smartphone reviewers, they are really one of the most important chips installed in mobile devices. That’s why smartphone manufacturers are already working on implementing new standards in their products. The network regularly shows photos of subsequent prototypes that use the 5G network. Also, base station manufacturers are working intensively on the implementation of the new mobile telephony standard. The 5G standard itself was also quite quickly developed. However, despite this, it turns out that Wi-Fi 6 will gain great popularity faster.
Wi-Fi 6 and 5G will debut on a large scale at the turn of 2019/2020
Let’s get to the details. Pre-standard chipsets that support Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) have already been prepared by all major manufacturers of integrated circuits, i.e. Broadcom, Qualcomm, Marvell, Quantenna, Intel and Celeno. However, the first implementations of the new technology will take place in 2019. Then the gradual departure from popular 802.11ac systems will begin. A significant increase in the number of devices supporting the new standard is expected for 2020. For then, the new standard will be fully ratified. In turn, the barrier of 1 billion devices will be exceeded in 3 years.
In turn, the first 5G networks and smartphones serving the new generation of mobile networks will also appear in 2019. Qualcomm announced the first delivery of the Snapdragon X50 modem some time ago. In turn, Motorola announced the premiere of the 5G Moto Mod for Moto Z3, which will debut in the US in early 2019. However, analysts predict that the barrier of 1 billion 5G smartphones will be exceeded 6 years after the launch of the first commercial networks.
At the same time, the analysis from ABI Research omits one, but this is a very important issue. The popularity of a given standard of wireless communication is not determined by the number of hosts or smartphones, but the popularity of devices that provide the Internet with the use of a given technology. This means that Wi-Fi 6 will become popular only when routers that support it appears everywhere. In turn, 5G networks all depend on the speed of operators’ work and the upgrades of currently used base stations.
Source: ABI Research