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Alphabet Soup Replaced with Numbers

Oct. 3, 2018 — The Wi-Fi Alliance announced it’s shifting from labeling certified products with the technical specifications developed at the IEEE engineering group in favor of a simple generational numbering system. Thus, 802.11n becomes Wi-Fi 4, 802.11ac is now Wi-Fi 5, and the slowly emerging 802.11ax will be known as Wi-Fi 6. The changes aren’t fully retroactive: they’re not going back to earlier specifications than 802.11n, as those are no longer widely in use (although they’re supported through backwards compatibility). But it’s a shorter and easier way to market and explain technology, and to see an obvious numeric progression. A future edition of the book will adopt the new numbering scheme, which will take many months to roll out, as packaging and manuals are updated and redesigned. Older products still sold actively may not be updated at all, too.

Posted by Glenn Fleishman (Permalink)