Wi-Fi 7 on track to nearly 50% adoption by 2024-end, says WBA

The WBA further found that 58% of respondents are more confident in investing in Wi-Fi than they were a year ago

A new Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) report reveals that Wi-Fi 6, 6E and 7 will be among the top technology priorities for network operators, ISPs, device and chipset vendors, enterprises and others in 2024, beating out other contenders including CBRS, DAS and even private networks. Specifically, more than 41% of respondents said they plan to deploy Wi-Fi 7 by the end of 2024, up from the 33% that said the same one year ago.

The report further found that confidence in Wi-Fi investment is on rise, with 58% of respondents saying they are more confident in investing in the technology, compared to 46% last year. Two-thirds also stated that 6 GHz spectrum availability is an important issue for 2024.

Other trends explored in the report include the increasing interested in adding WBA OpenRoaming or Passpoint to a new or existing Wi-Fi networks. OpenRoaming, developed by Cisco and now controlled by the WBA, allows seamless Wi-Fi onboarding and handoff between Wi-Fi networks. OpenRoaming adheres to Passpoint and Wireless Roaming Intermediary Exchange (WRIX) standards, helping bridge the gap between Wi-Fi and cellular networks by making it easy and safe for users to roam between Wi-Fi networks without having to deal with prompts to sign-in. More than 47% of report respondents said they plan to these capabilities to their Wi-Fi networks by the end of 2024, while another 33% already have.

The Wi-Fi Alliance is expected to certify the Wi-Fi 7 (or 802.11be) standard sometime around the end of 2023 or the beginning of 2024, which will act as an inflection point for the impressive adoption outlined in the WBA’s report.

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