The Future of WiFi – WiFi6 Future Trends for MSPs, ISPs and SPs

Future of WiFi

The Future of WiFi – A WiFi6 guide for MSPs, ISPs, and SPs

At Tanaza we believe it’s time to present, data in hand, the latest news for MSPs, ISPs, and SPs about the future of WiFi and Cloud Management.
Today and tomorrow, more than ever, Wi-Fi will be one of the most widespread technologies in the world and represents a crucial point in the daily and business lives of billions of people.

Statistic: Number of Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices worldwide from 2019 to 2030 (in billions) | Statista

By the end of 2018, there were an estimated 22 billion IoT devices connected around the world. As the sophistication of both hardware and software in the consumer electronics industry skyrockets, an increasing share of the electronic devices produced around the world will be manufactured with Wi-Fi 6 connectivity. Forecasts suggest that by 2030 around 50 billion of these IoT devices will be connected around the world, creating a massive web of interconnected devices spanning everything from smartphones to kitchen appliances.

The future of WiFi Technology

In a previous article, we discussed How soon WiFi 6 will impact Business WiFi Networks.  WiFi 6 is starting to emerge in lots of enterprise wireless access points.

Here are some examples:

WiFi 6 Access Points for Business – Discover the right device to enter in the future of WiFi

EAP101 is a dual-band WiFi 6 indoor access point for enterprises. The device supports 2×2:2 uplink and downlink MU-MIMO between the AP and multiple clients, with up to 1.7Gbps aggregated data rate. EAP101 is equipped with Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) radio enabling value-added applications such as iBeacon, presence.

 

EAP101 is a dual-band WiFi 6 indoor access point for enterprises. The device supports 2×2:2 uplink and downlink MU-MIMO between the AP and multiple clients, with up to 1.7Gbps aggregated data rate. EAP101 is equipped with Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) radio enabling value-added applications such as iBeacon, presence.

 

Linksys Velop Series WiFi 6 access points for business offer a reliable connection for streaming, gaming, and video chatting without interruption, thanks to 1.4 GHz quad-core processor. Experiment higher level of speed performance and until 4x more capacity with WiFi6 settings.

 

Linksys LAPAC1200 is a Dual-Band WiFi6 Access Point with Power over Ethernet (POE) support. This enterprise access point features one Gigabit Ethernet and is backward-compatible with widely deployed 802.11a/b/g infrastructure.

 

What is Wi-Fi 6 and what are benefits for MSPs, ISPs and SPs?


“Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) is the next generation of IEEE standard for wireless local-area networks, faster and more powerful than the previous one Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac). It is also known as High Efficiency Wi-Fi, for the overall improvements to Wi-Fi 6 clients under dense environments”.

Year by year, MSPs, ISPs, and SPs are facing the challenge to provide higher throughput and bandwidth for multiple connected devices in enterprise networks. Hardware is not enough to guarantee an adequate and democratic sharing of WiFi connection. A new standard was necessary to manage the huge quantity of devices in the networks (anchor link to the chapter dedicated to e-waste).

On April 23rd, 2021 the FCC voted and approved the allocation of the new 6GHz band for Wi-Fi. WiFi 6 represents a new revolution for enterprise and SMBs WiFi networks.

802.11n - Wi-Fi 4802.11ac - Wi-Fi 5802.11ax - Wi-Fi 6
Frequency Range (GHz)2.4 - 52.42.4 - 5 - 6
Channel Bandwidth (MHz)20 - 4020 - 40 - 80 - 80+80 - 16020 - 40 - 80 - 80+80 - 160
Subcarrier Spacing (KHz)312.5312.578.125
Symbol time3.23.212.8
MU-MIMONoneDownlinkUplink and Downlink
Access SchemeOFDMOFDMOFDM, OFDMA
Data Subcarrier ModulationBPSK, QPSK, 16-64 QAMBPSK, QPSK, 16-64 QAMBPSK, QPSK, 16-64-256-1024 QAM
CodingBCC (mandatory) - LDPC (optional)BCC (mandatory) - LDPC (optional)BCC (mandatory) - LDPC (mandatory)

Let’s analyze the various improvements point by point, showing concrete benefits and changes for MPSs, ISPs and SPs business.

Frequency Range 6GHz – More capacity, less latency in the future of WiFi

More connected devices mean higher levels of Wi-Fi congestion. The pandemic has shown how the amount of data on Wi-Fi networks has reached critical levels: wireless bandwidth and capacity have never been greater.

The first improvement of WiFi 6 technology is basically more capacity. Specifically, access points will be able to operate on the 6GHz spectrum, in addition to the 2.4GHz and 5GHz that currently exist. The possibility to use this new frequency range guarantees lower latency for applications in higher density environments. Moreover, 6GHz includes the orthogonal frequency-division multiple access (OFDMA) feature from cellular technologies, which takes advantage of servicing multiple users on sub-channels transmitted simultaneously.

There are also changes in regulations related to the 6GHz frequency range. WiFi access points have to be registered in databases and become ‘geolocation aware’. They must support the following standards:

  • Low Power Indoor (LPI)
  • Power Spectral Density (PSD)
  • Automated Frequency Coordination (AFC)

LPI and PSD are rules for restricting the power output of indoor 6 GHz devices, to limit interference with each other or with licensed outdoor use. AFC is for outdoor 6 GHz devices and consults with a database based on the FCC’s Universal Licensing System so that 6 GHz access points can avoid interfering with licensed applications.

 

Wi-Fi 6 has multiple Wi-Fi channels and these channels can be allocated more effectively to permit multiple transmissions to multiple users at the same time. Hence, when organisations power outdoor Wi-Fi 6 for users, it means more efficiency, less overheads and also support for a greater variety of applications.

20MHz vs 40MHz vs 80MHz vs 160MHz – What is the best Channel Bandwidth for Business?

Wi-Fi 6 supports channels widths of 20MHz, 40MHz, 80MHz, and 160 MHz.

20MHz – 40MHz – 80MHz channels are recommended for business, while 160MHz is best suited for environments with low channel utilization.

For a correct deployment, it is important to distinguish the correct channel bandwidth selection. The channel bandwidth can really affect the performance on networks.

20MHz is the most common Wi-Fi bandwidth as most users still opt to use 2.4GHz radios (almost never in 5GHz).
20MHz is the correct channel bandwidth for businesses that want to guarantee high levels of connection for remote workers or users with high expectations.
Today, WiFi customers prefer to use video streaming and video calls: this requires high levels of packets in download for buffering in streaming services (Netflix, Amazon Video, Youtube, for instance) and video-communications applications (Google Meet, Skype, and Slack Call, for instance). In 5GHz bandwidth, thanks to a large amount of non-overlapping channels, providers will not face any problem doing anything, and the internet speed will not have any significant interruptions.

40MHz is the best channel bandwidth for businesses requiring a medium-high level of data transfer rate and higher than 20MHz.
IT professionals can still get 12 non-overlapping channels if combined with a 5MHz frequency.
This channel bandwidth is used by both 2.4GHz and 5GHz. It has a higher speed but it’s not particularly suggested in crowded areas, especially with 2.4Ghz. MSPs, ISPs, and SPs should use it, only on 5GHz and for a restricted number of connected devices. It’s easy to understand how these few users will receive a perfect signal.

80MHz is the last suggested channel bandwidth for business use. This channel bandwidth has the highest data transfer rate for the commercial ranges. The absence of non-overlapping channels to operate within makes high levels of congestion with high levels of traffic. 80GHz is the best channel for IT professionals that think “quality over quantity”: this bandwidth guarantees the highest signal performances for a really limited number of users.

160MHz deserves a separate chapter. It is totally not recommended for IT professionals. And often neither for home use. 160MHz channel bandwidth is perfect for activities like Ultra-HD streaming and professional gaming. Activities that can create a high rate of congestion, especially with the next networks. It’s easy to understand how a single user with this channel bandwidth creates congestion for all the others. Totally unrecommended for business solutions.

Subcarrier spacing drastically reduced to improve WIFi efficiency

The future of WiFi includes a drastic reduction of 802.11ac spacing. It is an important technical change for MSPs, ISPs, and SPs. The reduction of subcarrier spacing improves signal efficiency and the quantity of multiple simultaneous packets for upload and download, rather than one at a time.

MU-MIMO and OFDMA – A perfect combination for uplink and downlink transmissions

Wi-Fi 6 leverages the multi-user version of OFDMA and MU-MIMO for better efficiency of both uplink and downlink transmissions. OFDMA allows the transmission of huge quantities of data over a single noisy channel. This technique works by splitting a single signal into multiple smaller signals that are transmitted. OFDMA is perfect for medium-far transmissions, while MU MIMO is more indicated for short-range. Then, the combination of OFDMA and MU-MIMO allows Wi-Fi 6 to cover the entire spectrum of possibilities of high-density environments. For a better technical understanding of OFDMA and MU-MIMO in 802.11ax panorama, we suggest reading Tanaza’s guide for MSPs.

WPA3 WIFI6 – Future of WiFi means higher levels of security

Wi-Fi 6 enables secure endpoint protection thanks to WPA3 certification. WPA3 is the next generation of Wi-Fi security and provides cutting-edge security protocols to the access point industry.
This next-generation security protocol enables more robust authentication, delivers increased cryptographic strength for highly sensitive data markets, and maintains resiliency of mission critical networks.
All WPA3 networks:
– Use the latest security methods;
– Disallow outdated legacy protocols;
– Require use of Protected Management Frames (PMF);

The future of WiFi is for the environment protection

These are not easy moments for the environment. Global warming, climate change, extreme meteorological phenomena: wireless technology can do its own part to protect the environment through the energy-saving and the reuse of hardware components.

Tanaza also took up on the challenge.

WiFi cloud management to reduce CO2 caused by unnecessary onsite travel

For several years now, there has been an open debate about the extent to which working remotely can drastically reduce the pollution caused by traveling by transport. In the past, in order to understand the problems behind a misconfiguration of devices or a network failure, it was necessary for an IT professional to travel to the site. 

An activity that is now obsolete and in the long term causes increased pollution levels. Thanks to Tanaza, the cloud-based network management platform, IT teams can remotely configure and manage all network parameters from anywhere in the world without any unnecessary and environmentally harmful travel.

Network device upgrade to avoid planned obsolescence and reduce electronic waste

Tanaza has long understood that the true value of a network device is not so much in the hardware, but in the software included. In very general terms, MSPs, ISPs and SPs could potentially continue to use any WiFi access points even after it becomes legacy, thanks to the Tanaza firmware.

Several industry studies have shown that the average lifetime of WiFi devices is 3 to 4 years. Imagine for a second, the gas emissions and the amount of e-waste produced by manufacturing and replacing the current network infrastructure around the world.

Obviously, incumbent vendors have strong economic motivations to design devices that at some point break down or are not updated anymore and thus consequently are replaced. It’s called design with planned obsolescence. It happens in the world of home appliances, just as it happens in the networking industry. This is nothing new, but the situation has reached critical levels.

Here is a graph from the Global E-Waste Monitor 2020. We hope it will raise awareness of the problem of e-waste that planned obsolescence and the resulting waste generation creates:

Global E-Waste Monitor 2020

Access points fall under the Small IT and telecommunication equipment classification

By releasing dedicated software updates, Tanaza is able to span the life of WiFi access points by up to two years. At the same time, by using devices with TanazaOS as the operating system, the user is no longer forced to the planned obsolescence of mono vendors who at some point do not release the necessary software updates for a device to keep working thus forcing MSPs, ISPs, and SPs to replace it.

These two combined factors dramatically decrease the amount of e-waste produced, reducing network infrastructure costs for providers and contributing to environmental protection.

Tanaza is getting ready for the future of WiFi

Tanaza is working tirelessly to develop compatibility with the best access points in the market to offer users a complete list of devices that work with Tanaza. However, It’s fair to say that despite WiFi 6 being around the corner, there is no need to replace or upgrade the network infrastructure right away as it will take some time before users acquire technology compatible with WiFi 6. Remember, you can deploy a WiFi 6 infrastructure but if the connecting devices are not compatible or support the WiFi6 standard they won’t enjoy the benefits of WiFi 6.

Future of WiFi is here. Unleash the power of network management

Start a 15-day free trial today. Deploy and manage business WiFi networks with Tanaza. Enter in the future of WiFi, now.

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How to deploy an Outdoor WiFi network for your venue

Outdoor WiFi Access Points

How to deploy an Outdoor WiFi network for your venue

There can be multiple reasons why you need to deploy an outdoor WiFi network for your area. Maybe you want your guest WiFi network to extend outside to keep your guests connected on your network at all times.
Nowadays, many businesses offer complimentary WiFi for their guests/customers. One of the most primary and biggest reasons to provide free WiFi is that it increases on-premises time. Many surveys suggest that consumers stay longer when they are connected to public WiFi. It is also seen that businesses offering free WiFi have seen a comparatively high success rate. No matter how large or small your business is, offering free WiFi will always benefit your business in one way or another. Consider this as an investment, and you will feel the growth in your company.

5 key things to take into consideration before deploying an outdoor WiFi network

Before deploying an outdoor WiFi network, there are few things that you must take into consideration. Like an indoor WiFi network, the outdoor WiFi network also needs to be planned before deploying the access points. It’s essential to map out every access point and the extent to which the outdoor network will reach.

Remember, the outside areas you want to expand coverage to should be where you expect the most traffic. You need to ensure that throughout the installation of your outdoor network, the same network management configuration and solutions are being followed as your other networks.

With time, we have gotten access to tools to determine where we should place our access points and how high we should place them to broadcast the best signal. Choosing the right equipment is vital as everything depends on it. Apart from the access points, there are multiple things that you need to consider, such as firewalls, switches, network interface controllers, and so much more. Your equipment must work seamlessly and not create any limitations for you from a speed or usability standpoint. By positioning your equipment correctly, you will distribute the wireless signal to cover a large area. Configuring your equipment will provide the best performance in the environment you have set up your network.

Estimate bandwidth needs for outdoor WiFi

When building infrastructure, it is crucial to detect how much bandwidth do you require carefully. It is fundamental to consider and adequately calculate the bandwidth requirements of the WiFi network. As we all know, bandwidth is referred to as the channel’s capacity to transmit data. Data is sent in a binary system (0 or 1), each of which is called a bit.

Network bandwidth plays a significant role in designing and maintaining a functional wireless network. Now, it is essential to calculate network bandwidth requirements before deploying them onto a network because the more bandwidth the data connection has, the more data it can send and receive at one time.

However, every kind of deployment location has certain types of bandwidth limits. This means that there is a constraint to space for the data to flow. Some devices require more bandwidth than others. If you wish to maintain proper speeds on each device, then greater bandwidth is a must.

Before you start deploying your WiFi network, you must estimate how many devices will be connected to your WiFi network simultaneously. The more bandwidth you deliver, the faster the devices will run. The usage level for Social Networks, Emails, VOIP, and video streaming ranges from medium to heavy, so be aware of it.

Select the best outdoor access points for outdoor WiFi

Tanaza works with a wide range of access points to suit almost all scenarios and maintain the network’s reliability. Knowing your internet usage is necessary to choose the right access point.

There are many expectations from a particular access point ranging from speed performance, ease of installation, cloud manageability, and software stability. Nowadays, access points with cloud-based management features are a must for any business. It will let network administrators control the devices and customize bandwidth while monitoring the overall network performance and security issues.

These are our favorite access points for outdoor WiFi networks.

This high-power access point is ideal for outdoor long-distance transmission signals. Multiple concurrent users can connect online thanks to directional dual-polarized antennas and a powerful transmit power of up to 500mW. As a result, there is an increased terminal throughput and a much better user experience. It supports dual-frequency on 2.4Ghz and 5.8Ghz. An estimated 50 users can access the Internet on the 2.4Ghz band and 110 users on the 5.8Ghz. Furthermore, the 1300 Mbps high-speed wireless transmission rate of the CF-WA350 makes WiFi signals stronger and more efficient. On the other hand, the two gigabit ports support higher bandwidth while transmitting data in an agile and smooth manner. This access point is available with the Tanaza Operating System out of the box.

The Comfast CF-WA350 is an 802.11ac Wave 2 MU-MIMO. This technology allows multiple concurrent users.

Outdoor. The AP is ideal for residential areas, parks, schools, factories, commercial streets, villages, scenic spots, and more.

This high-power access point is suitable for outdoor areas. It hosts 50 concurrent users. Its two oxygen-free copper antennas with 360° omnidirectional WiFi coverage meets the needs of different situations. It also features a SE2576L power amplifier, improving wireless network reception and the transmission function. This access point is available with the Tanaza Operating System out of the box. 

The Comfast CF-EW71 has a single-band and cloud-managed SU-MIMO 802.11n. It delivers a 300 Mbps aggregate frame rate with 2.4GHz radio.

Outdoor. The Comfast CF-EW71 stands up in severe environments, thanks to its outdoor IP66 rating that provides the ability to handle different kinds of rugged environments: lightning protection, waterproof, dustproof, antifreeze, high-temperature resistance, and it's antioxidant.

The UniFi AC Mesh Ubiquiti includes adjustable dual-band Omni antennas. You have the option to use a 5 GHz Omni antenna1 for spot-beam coverage in high-density locations with numerous APs and clients, like a conference hall or event center. The UAP-AC-M discreetly integrates into any environment. The UniFi AC Mesh Ubiquiti is versatile. You have the option to use a 5 GHz sector antenna (wide beam in the azimuth plane and narrow in the elevation plane) for broad outdoor coverage. The AP is compatible with 802.3af PoE Alternative A and 24V passive PoE. 

The UniFi AC Mesh Ubiquiti model features 2x2 MIMO technology available in single and five packs. It can be used for indoors or outdoors deployments.

Indoor and outdoor. The UniFi AC Mesh Ubiquiti can be mounted on a wall, pole or can be fast-mounted on an optional Ubiquiti high-gain antenna. The antenna options on this access point include Omni antennas or the fast-mount adapter to install the AP on the optionally connected antenna.

The UAP-AC-M-PRO is ideal for applications requiring 3×3 MIMO data rates for close-in Omni coverage. It has simultaneous dual-band, 3×3 MIMO technology and is available in single-and five packs. This access point has built-in dual-band omnidirectional antennas that deliver expanded range coverage outdoors. The primary port is for data and PoE; the secondary port is for bridging. 

The enclosure of this access point is designed to withstand the elements, which makes it the ideal choice for outdoor deployment.

Outdoor. The access point can be mounted on a wall or pole.

Maximize WiFi Performance

To maximize your WiFi’s performance, there are multiple ways that you can opt for. With Tanaza, network admins can set a per-user guest WiFi bandwidth limit. The platform allows limiting bandwidth both per SSID and per user too at the same time. After surveying your network connectivity, you can decide to choose a suitable WiFi access point antenna. Directional antennas are considered a better option as they send a signal in one specific direction. 

You can improve your network connectivity by pointing your antenna in the direction where the signal lacks. You can also use additional antennas to maximize your WiFi network’s performance and increase the access point’s power. You can use them to make your WiFi signal stronger in a specific area, such as an open-air restaurant or the swimming pool.

Understand the power gain with the Rule of 10s and 3s

Your device’s radio power describes how well the transmitting antenna converts the input power into radio waves, known as ‘power gain.’ The power of the access point is the intensity of its wireless signal. The change in intensity is called gain. It represents the increase of power, which is the ratio between input power and output power. 

The gain of the antennas is expressed in decibels (dB). The power input and output are in milliWatts (mW) in the wireless communication sector. To understand the power gain, simply let us explain the Rule of 10s and 3s. For every loss or gain of 3dBm, divide or multiply the power in mW by 2. Whereas for every loss or gain of 10dBm, multiply the power in mW by 10.

Improve user engagement with a captive portal

Tanaza integrates with the Classic Hotspot platform that allows network managers to personalize how WiFi users log into the network. The platform provides you with various login modes that will enable you to gather different types of information regarding your customers. 

Apart from the basic login modes via email, phone number, and password, users can opt for social login. We suggest you opt for social login as it is the optimal login mode from the marketing point of view. To increase user engagement on your page, you can advertise products and services to your customers to increase their engagement. Allowing social login on your captive portal is an excellent option to collect customer’s insights. This data is a great tool to drive marketing campaigns and target the right audience for a network administrator. 

Discover more about Classic Hotspot by Tanaza

The outdoor WiFi has the same amount of benefits as the indoor WiFi, but there is a slight difference in setting up the two. You need to choose the right access point that satisfies your bandwidth requirements to provide optimal connectivity. It is good for your business growth and enhances your overall guest user experience. 

Furthermore, it is also crucial to have a unique network management system that enables you to manage the networks and WiFi access points regardless of the brand. Tanaza is the most innovative alternative for network management in the cloud.

Unleash the power of network management

Start a 15-day free trial today. Deploy and manage your outdoor WiFi networks with Tanaza.

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How soon will WiFi 6 impact Business WiFi Networks?

WiFi 6

How soon will WiFi6 impact Business WiFi Networks

WiFi 6 is going to transform connectivity. This next-generation WiFi technology has come with the emerging 5G cellular technology that will change the way we connect to the network. With technological advancement, MSPs have to stay ahead of the trend to cope with the development of wireless networks. 

The WiFi 6 or 802.11ax can connect devices that are far from the reaches in the crowded networks. This new WiFi standard will completely reform the way we connect to our smart devices entirely. The progression of the WiFi standards has always brought a significant change than its predecessors. 

Just like the previous generation of technologies, the WiFi6 is emerging in the same manner. It is coming integrated inside the latest smartphones and laptops, new routers, and access points that promise faster and comparatively reliable connectivity for more devices. 

WiFi6 is both a revolutionary and evolutionary standard. We all know that it will provide faster, more reliable connections. It is better able to handle a lot more traffic at once at a simultaneous time. It may not seem evident initially, but revolution is destined to follow the evolution.

Differences between WiFi 5 and WiFi 6

The WiFi 6 was announced in 2018, which was the better, faster generation of the ongoing 802.11ac technology or WiFi5. It began to be certified in September 2019 in the devices. Slowly but gradually, the 802.11ax (WiFi6) started appearing on devices. For now, it is coming in the flagships of Apple and Samsung. The WiFi6 tech has also emerged in some routers and access points. 

Of course, this technology offers significant improvements to its predecessors. Not only does it work in high-density environments, but it also supports dozens of devices. Furthermore, it also boosts the battery life of compatible devices and possesses higher data transfer rates than previous generations. 

Talking about speed, theoretically, the WiFi 6 delivers maximum speed rates of 9.6Gbps across multiple channels, in contrast to the WiFi5’s 3.5Gbps. It is almost 250% more than the WiFi5 devices. The higher speed of WiFi6 is due to the OFDMA (Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access) sub-channels, MU-MIMO user multiplexed, Beamforming, and 1024 Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM). The beamforming enables higher data rates at a given range to increase network capacity. This all became feasible because of these multiple variations in Wifi5. 

If you want to discover more about this technology, read our previous article, the ultimate guide to the 802.11ax wireless standard.

Is WiFi 6 worth it?

The unequivocal answer is ‘YES.’ The WiFi 6 comes with many improvements in its network from its predecessors. The industry certification program based on the IEEE 802.11ax standard accentuates optimum connectivity in places with thousands of connected devices such as stadiums and other public venues. 

The advanced WiFi 6 ensures that the connected devices perform at their optimum levels. Also, the WiFi6 certified devices meet the highest standards for security and interoperability. The 802.11ax technology is undoubtedly worth it in terms of the features it offers. The OFDMA effectively shares the channels to increase network efficiency and lower latency in high-demand environments. The 160MHz channel utilization increases bandwidth to deliver significant performance with low latency. 

Also, the WiFi 6 certified devices intensify the performance of the applications. The MU-MIMO (antenna) technology, known as Multi-User, Multiple-Input, Multiple-Output technology, allows multiple users to access a wireless network simultaneously without any disturbance or signal dropping. The more downlink data is transferred at a particular time by enabling access points to handle more devices at one time concurrently. 

With the increase in IoT devices connected to the internet, the latter requires a more organized network infrastructure. The WiFi 6 comes with low power improvements like target wake time considered optimal for IoT devices.

Do businesses need WiFi 6?

The WiFi 6 is all about improving the networks when a lot more devices are connected. The speed of 9.6Gbps that WiFi 6 claims are theoretical, and it is unlikely that you ever need such speed in real-world WiFi use. The fact that WiFi6 has a much higher theoretical speed than its predecessor is quite essential. The more the devices are connected, you will experience more toll on your network. So Yes, it’s true that businesses need WiFi 6. The latest WiFi standard introduces new technologies that work on the issues that come while connecting dozens of WiFi devices on a single network. It lets the routers communicate with more devices by sending data to multiple devices in the same broadcast. 

The usage of WiFi 6 in your business will surely increase your office productivity. It will help the companies drive more value from their present infrastructure. The vast transfer rate will allow companies to attain 5G level performance.

How will WiFi 6 impact your networks, and how soon?

We all understand that WiFi 6 is providing faster and more reliable connections. The number of critical new features provide WiFi 6 networks and the devices with the ability to handle more traffic and efficiently. The vital point to note here is that WiFi 6 isn’t likely to be substantially faster than WiFi 5 when connected to a single laptop. However, when more and more devices get added to your WiFi 6 network, the story changes. 

In this scenario, when current routers may get overwhelmed by the requests from many devices, WiFi 6 routers will effectively keep all those devices up to date with the amount of data each device needs. It is important to remember that you will only get the full benefits of WiFi 6 if both provider and client devices are certified for WiFi 6.

WiFi generations rely on hardware and not just on software updates. To get this new version of WiFi running, you’ll need to buy new devices. The new devices with WiFi 6 will start coming into the market by default. It’s not something that you’ll want to run out to the store and buy.

Should you upgrade your business networks to WiFi 6?

Well, Yes, you should upgrade your business networks to WiFi 6. It offers more speed, a more reliable connection, improved battery life, and better security. This new WiFi standard enables an unimpeded network by allowing more client devices and IoT devices to connect. Undoubtedly it seems a wise decision to upgrade your business networks to WiFi 6. With time new devices have emerged that are WiFi 6 certified but still, it is a long way to get transitioned to this new standard. The sole reason behind this is that the WiFi 6 will appear in the market by default as it has appeared on flagship smartphones of Apple and Samsung and some routers. These routers are so far quite expensive high-end devices. 

The inclusion of WiFi 6 in the devices has begun. As time will pass the prices will start coming down, and they already are since this network was introduced. The WiFi Alliance began certifying devices in 2019, so the routers and devices became cheaper. There is no need to rush to replace every WiFi5 device and network component simultaneously. The reason behind this is that there aren’t many WiFi6 clients out there. It will take a few years for the WiFi 6 to make its way to the market. The hardware for this WiFi standard is still being built, and interoperability testing is being performed, implying that it is worth waiting before opting for this standard.

So, pace yourself. The technology standard is fresh and out of the oven. Don’t jump to change the network infrastructure as the reality is that if the client devices do not support WiFi 6 is very little what you will be able to offer to your guest WiFi users in terms of WiFi 6. I would forecast another three years for most users to have devices that support WiFi 6. Right after then, you can start thinking about an upgrade for your networks.

“There is no need to rush to replace every WiFi 5 device and network component simultaneously.
The reason behind this is that there aren’t many WiFi 6 clients out there.”

WiFi 6 has already made its way into the market but still, it will take time to reach its full potential. There is no doubt that 802.11ax has bought immediate benefits in network speed, capacity, and responsiveness. These are some of the perks that will improve overtime as WiFi 6 capable devices replace the system with older generation connectivity. This network will revolutionize the way by bringing network performance to the optimum level in virtually every segment. To get the most out of WiFi 6, buyers have to choose the best technology available for their deployments. 

Tanaza is constantly adding more APs to the list of compatible devices. It is currently working on a batch of WiFi 6 APs to support customers when the right time comes to upgrade the networks with the latest technology.

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Related articles:

https://www.tanaza.com/blog/802-11ax-wireless-standard/

How to choose WiFi access points for restaurants

WiFi Access Points for Restaurants - Choose the Right Hardware

How to choose WiFi access point for restaurants

Choosing the best WiFi access points for restaurants is much more important than we think. Access points are the backbone of any wireless network. Therefore, it is important to choose the right hardware as it ensures that you can build a strong and scalable system that can handle the right amount of connections per device and maintain the network’s reliability based on your connectivity needs. 

When deploying a new WiFi network, it is important to look for the right access point to enhance guests’ connectivity. The type of access points you might require will depend on the environment in which it will be deployed. Further, it is paramount to provide seamless connectivity that allows users to roam freely throughout the space.

Choosing the right WiFi Access Point for restaurants

Measure the restaurant size and check physical obstacles for WiFi signal

The primary step that involves choosing the right access point for your restaurant is to measure your restaurant’s size. Check how large is the space you need to cover with an access point. If you are just starting a new restaurant with less gathering, say around 10-30 people, you will need far fewer access points than what you might require for a gathering of around 30-80 people. If you think of expanding shortly, you might consider choosing an AP with an extensive range to prepare for your growth.

Also, you need to consider many factors, such as the shape of your floor plan, note the type of building or wall materials that divide the space. The number of access points needed in a place increases if the internal walls are separating the area.

Removing any unnecessary physical obstacle will enhance the connectivity of the access point. A thorough survey of your restaurant will also help determine how many access points you will require.

Number of concurrent users – Check how many users are connected to WiFi

Depending on the size of the location, the number of concurrent users connected to the network will also vary. For example, a large restaurant network may host approximately a maximum of 30 concurrent WiFi users, whereas a mid-sized restaurant may host a maximum of 12 concurrent users. Therefore, it is important to take into account the client coverage carefully when designing the WiFi network. 

In addition, different factors can affect the number of concurrent users that a wireless access point can support. Although many access points support up to approximately 250 connected devices, it is important to note that single radio devices can handle a smaller number of concurrent users than dual-radio access points. 

If you want to calculate the number of concurrent users and number of APs for your WiFi networks, read our article Network Capacity Planning – Wireless Capacity vs. Coverage.

Predict internet usage to establish what WiFi access points work better for your restaurant

It is essential to understand the internet usage of your restaurant and to know what kind of online activity your WiFi users will be doing while connected to your WiFi network. Knowing your internet usage is necessary to choose the right access point for your restaurant.

Some applications consume more bandwidth than others. The rate of data transfer is calculated in bits per second. This bit/second is quite lower when customers simply browse the web, message and chat on Facebook, Whatsapp, or Telegram, or just go through their emails. However, when people share or download the pictures and files on DropBox and Google Drive, the number of bits/seconds transmitted across your network will increase.

Moreover, if guest users are streaming videos on YouTube, Netflix, or making VoIP calls and video calls, there is a significant rise in the number of bits/sec. Therefore, it is important to predict internet usage beforehand to provide your guests with an optimal WiFi experience. The access point handles different numbers of concurrent users depending on the internet usage of customers.

Calculate your internet usage with our access point selector.

Choose the best WiFi access points for restaurants, considering technological variables

By considering the technological variables, you would choose the best WiFi access points for the guest users. Apart from the access point performance, if the signal of the WiFi network is not reached to the users, the number of concurrent clients connected to the network in a location will be limited. 

Thus, carry out a proper site survey of your restaurant to choose the right access point. There are many expectations from a particular access point ranging from speed performance, ease of installation, cloud manageability, and software stability. Access points with cloud-based management features are a must for any restaurant provider. It lets network administrators control the devices and customize bandwidth while monitoring the overall network performance and security issues. 

Discover Tanaza Powered Devices with network management out-of-the-box for your restaurant WiFi networks.

POE vs LAN

Power over Ethernet (PoE) is a technique that passes electrical power over wired ethernet local area networks. It allows the power cords to carry the electrical current of each device instead of data cables. The POE usage limits the number of wires needed for a Wifi network. The primary benefit of the POE is that you do not need to run electrical wiring, which saves money in material and saves installation time. The usage of POE has made access point installations relatively easier and more scalable. 

On the other hand, LAN is a computer network that interconnects computers within a limited area. Contrary to Power over Ethernet, in LAN cable external power source (Adapter) is required to get the power.

802.11ac vs 802.11n

The 802.11ac and 802.11n are the wireless networking standards that significantly differ from each other. The IEEE 802.11ac was finalized in 2013, and it supports a wireless frequency of the only 5Hz. It is the 5th generation of WiFi and is found in every major smartphone, laptop, computer, and smart television. The improved version of 802.11ac offers better speed, better range, and enhanced WiFi performance. 

Instead, the 802.11n wireless networking standard was finalized in 2009. It uses multiple antennas to increase data rates and supports the wireless frequencies of both 2.4GHz and 5GHz. In terms of speed, 802.11ac is capable of 720Mbps (Megabits/sec.), whereas 802.11n locks its speed at 240Mbps. 

You clearly know the winner here. As 802.11n uses 2.4GHz and 5GHz wireless frequencies, it surpasses the 5th generation of WiFi which only uses 5GHz. Higher frequency bands are comparatively faster, but lower bands travel further.

Determine WiFi access point placement to improve coverage

Only having a suitable access point will not determine seamless connectivity. If you have placed a WiFi access point for a restaurant, you need to find a suitable placement to improve its coverage. It is recommended to install the wireless access point on the ceilings of your restaurants as this will provide full connectivity to the whole place. 

Moreover, the top of the access point must be facing the intended service area to improve the coverage. This is the place where the antennas of an access point are situated. 

The access point must never be obstructed by anything, such as drop ceilings, TVs, or cameras. In fact, these access points get affected by other devices that transmit radiofrequency. Therefore, the interference results in weak and unstable connectivity. So make sure that your access point is positioned away from the common radio sources such as Televisions, Microwave/Ovens, Speakers, Wireless security cameras, and many more.

Select the right WiFi access point antenna types: directional vs omnidirectional

It totally depends on your network connectivity to choose from the two types of WiFi access point antennas. One is directional, and the other is omnidirectional. The omnidirectional antenna is the one that sends signals to all directions, whereas the directional antenna, as the name suggests, sends a signal to only one direction. 

After surveying your network connectivity, you can decide to choose the right WiFi access point antenna. Directional antennas are considered a better option as they send a signal in one specific direction. You can improve your network connectivity by pointing your antenna in the direction where the signal lacks.

Test a multi-vendor approach if you want to reduce costs

While you are looking for the right WiFi access points for your restaurant, you need to consider all the factors that will ensure the seamless connectivity of your network to guest users. Consider that you need to install devices not only indoors but also outdoors for your deployment. 

For optimum performance of your access point, check the Tanaza platform. It’s a multi-vendor network management software to operate and control access points in the cloud. 

Tanaza works with the most commercial access point brands like Ubiquiti, MikroTik, OpenMesh, LigoWave, PowerCloud, and also it comes already pre-installed in a selected line of access points from Comfast, Amer Networks, Intelbras (only for Brazil), DCN, and Yuncore.

With Tanaza, you will be able to manage multiple WiFi devices from different vendors in a centralized way. Troubleshoot WiFi networks via cloud, enable captive portals with different authentication methods and customize the guest WiFi experience from a single platform.

If you are looking for the right access point for restaurants, you also need a network management software to operate and control the devices and networks. Tanaza allows you to scale network deployments, mix and match brands, all from the cloud.

Tanaza offers various customization options for the network administrators in which they can also limit the bandwidth and data usage. Discover all the features of the Tanaza platform by starting a free trial today.

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Experience the power of managing WiFi access points from the cloud with Tanaza.

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How to Improve WiFi Network Security

How to Improve WiFi Network Security - Tanaza

How to Improve WiFi Network Security

Discover how to improve the Wi-Fi security of your network deployments.

Protecting your WiFi Network from intrusion might be difficult if there is a breach in your network. In today’s world, nothing is more precious than data and to protect it from getting into the wrong hands is all you need to do. We always have to look out for malicious users trying to access networks and sensitive data that includes email IDs and passwords, and information about your bank accounts. It is important to understand that the WiFi systems extend beyond the walls of your workplace if you have not kept some security on the network. It will get difficult for you to control if someone gains access to your WiFi network. To improve WiFi security, the administrators have to constantly check their usernames and passwords to ensure that only authorized persons can connect to the network.

The administrator can also configure their network with password-protected SSIDs or even hide them to improve WiFi security. Usually, when we install the WiFi, we don’t realize much about its safety until all our devices are connected, and there is no issue with its speed or signal. However, this ignorance can make us prone to cyberattacks. We live in the age of data breaches, so it is of utmost importance that we practice certain steps to keep our WiFi network safe.

Few steps can help Improve WiFi Security:

1- Use strong passwords for accounts and access points

While setting up the passwords for our access points, we often try to use those that we can easily guess to remember them. We must not forget that changing your default username and using strong passwords is a primary step to improve WiFi security. The difficult passwords are often the safest, and the administrator must set up one that is the combination of a string of random characters. Changing the default name of your access point is crucial as the default credentials of the famous WiFi access points are widely known. 

Make sure that your password is unique and strong, and it is recommended that you change usernames and passwords for your access points frequently, every 30-90 days. By doing this, it will be difficult for anyone to guess them and restrict them from consuming your data.

2- Enable SSID encryption

One of the best ways to improve WiFi security is to change the name of your WiFi network, formerly known as SSID. Changing your WiFi name will be harder for the attackers to know which type of access point you are using. To ensure full-proof network security, it is important that you must hide all your SSIDs so that other users are not able to locate them. With the Tanaza platform, you will be able to encrypt your SSID to eliminate the possibility of your access point falling into the hands of an unauthorized person.

The Tanaza platform lets you add a maximum of 8 SSIDs for each Access point. You can configure each SSID individually. By clicking on a particular SSID, you’ll be redirected to its configuration that is divided into three: Summary, Wireless Security, and Bandwidth. Encrypting your SSID is most important to have a secure access point. By default, the SSID you have added is enabled with open encryption, which means any user can access it. For encrypting your SSID, you can choose from the various encryption languages such as WEP, WPA2-PSK, and Splash Pages. Since 2006, all Wifi-certified products are entitled to use WPA2 security. The Tanaza platform offers a splash page editor that allows WiFi professionals to configure, edit and customize their portal.

3- Filter MAC Addresses

Every device that connects to a network has a MAC (Media Access Controller) address. It is also known as a physical address as it is the identifier of the network card, which is unique. No two devices in the World can have the same MAC address. Filtering MAC addresses is one of the critical parts of improving your WiFi Access Point security. To filter the MAC address, you have to open the configuration window in your device and list MAC addresses to connect to the network.

In the Tanaza platform, you can also blacklist a specific user’s MAC address. There are various configuration options by which you can restrict users to connect to a specific SSID.

 

4- Monitor WiFi users activity

By Monitoring your WiFi activity, you make sure that there is no unusual activity in your WiFi network. You need to check on your data usage how much data is used on a particular day and at a specific time. With the Tanaza platform, you can easily monitor your WiFi network’s performance by seeing the number of clients currently associated with WiFi SSID and monitoring how much bandwidth they consume.

It is one of the best ways that will improve WiFi security to a great extent. You will even be able to track your device’s traffic flow at the WiFi network and the access point level. Tanaza also allows users to analyze and track the performance of WiFi networks using statistics.

5- Choose a WiFi cloud platform with high levels of reliability and scalability

Selecting a WiFi Cloud Platform that can provide you with an intuitive and powerful user interface is suitable for enterprise and retail environments. You need to select a platform that ensures the complete security of your WiFi network. To improve your WiFi security, you need a cloud platform that offers you a configuration suitable to your needs. Tanaza is the platform that you can trust fully as they are empowering hundreds of networks Worldwide. Hundreds of IT professionals have adopted their WiFi cloud platform.

6- Manage WiFi networks with a cloud platform that guarantees 99.99% Availability

The Tanaza WiFi Cloud Platform is among the few that guarantees 99.99% availability. It is one of the percentages used to communicate the system’s operational performance. It is one of the core features of the Tanaza platform based on the World’s most reliable cloud platform service. The level of high availability is guaranteed by the internal monitoring process that includes 24×7 failure detection with rapid term response which recovers data up to the latest few minutes. The powerful AWS platform by Amazon adds an extra layer of security in terms of availability.

7- Verify security levels for the cloud management platform you use

It is necessary to verify the security levels for the cloud management platform that you are using. Tanaza ensures complete security that will protect you from potential breaches in your network. They use Amazon AWS as a secure cloud services platform. The access to the core systems is not protected by passwords only, but also any remote access will be restricted by IP address. The firewalls highly protect their systems. For monitoring the access and potential threats, a 24×7 services logging is operative. From the user’s point of view, all sensitive data is secured with highly controlled and restricted access.

It is important that you secure your access point to save your data. Securing your WiFi can be done by configuring them with strong encryption protocols that prevent unauthorized users from connecting to your WiFi network. Tanaza focuses on the importance of data protection which is why they are considered best to improve WiFi security. They comply with the EU regulations and ensure that their tools are sufficient to protect personal data. Securing your network must be the top priority of any organization and if you have a platform that will remotely monitor your network’s performance is a gift. Start managing your devices today with Tanaza, the WiFi cloud management platform.

Manage your WiFi networks in a secured way with Tanaza

Try our 15-day free trial and experience the power of managing your networks from a centralized, cloud-based platform.

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How to choose the best channel for WiFi networks

How to Choose the Best Channel for WiFi Networks
How to choose the best channel for WiFi networks

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How to choose the best channel for WiFi networks can be tricky. When deploying a wireless network, Network Engineers need to select the right channel to improve WiFi coverage and performance significantly. 

WiFi instability and signal interruptions are very often tied to the choice of the channel applied. Issues like reduced range or sudden drops in transfer speed are the mainstream problems of any high-density WiFi deployment. This, of course, might depend on the wireless environment in which a new network is deployed. 

Therefore, before designing and implementing WiFi networks, it’s essential to ensure that the impact between a network previously deployed and converging WLANs is minimized 

To prevent all these issues with your networks, when planning for the right channel, we suggest taking into account two key factors: IP and Channel plan.

What is the IP Plan, and how does it work?

An IP plan is a document developed by Network Engineers to show how IP addresses will be distributed among network devices based on network design to support the required services.

The IP plan allows you to:

  • Determine the number of IP addresses required to provide the specified services to customers.
  • Maintain reachability between the different network segments.
  • Facilitate future expansion and modification of the network.

 

The first aspect to check concerns the presence of IP conflicts. IP conflicts occur when two or more networking devices have the same IP address (layer 3) and can communicate within the same WLAN (layer 2). Thus, the sender doesn’t know who should deliver the specific IP packet due to the conflict. It is like if two units claim to be the receiver of the specific package, and there is no way to know who will be chosen.

Therefore, it’s crucial to know the WLAN’s design, how it’s partitioned into collision domains, and how many NAT levels are cascaded. The typical situation in an environment where a DSL router is installed is that such router has a WAN port with a public IP, dynamically provided by the ISP. An IP class is shared among all LAN ports, such as 192.168.1.1/24. It means clients connecting to the LAN ports will receive an IP address between 192.168.1.2 and 192.168.1.254.

In these cases, it is best to leave the added AP configured to work in DHCP mode (with dynamic IP), which means it will receive an IP address in that range, behaving precisely like other clients.

To know the exact IP addresses assigned to WiFi clients, you can check the DHCP Lease Table, available in the DSL router configuration tool.

If your DSL router has a WiFi interface, the same criteria must be applied, as the SSID is usually connected to the LAN ports and shares the same DHCP range. If you need to assign a static IP to the added AP, it’s important to check the DHCP range of the DHCP server built into the DSL router.

This operation is usually accomplished by logging into the web interface or DSL router configuration tool.

The static IP assigned to the new AP connected to one of the router LAN ports must not be included in the DHCP RANGE; otherwise, an IP conflict is likely to occur between the AP and a network client receiving that IP from the DHCP server.

The Channel Plan to reduce interference

A proper design and deployment of a wireless network must include a channel plan