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Different Wi-Fi Protocols and Data Rates


Documentation

Content Type Product Information & Documentation Print

Article ID 000005725

Last Reviewed 03/28/2019

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IEEE 802.11 Wi-Fi protocol summary

Maximum data
Protocol Frequency Channel Width MIMO rate
(theoretical)

2.4 or 20, 40, 80, Multi User (MU- 1


802.11ax 2.4 Gbps
5GHz 160MHz MIMO)

802.11ac 20, 40, 80, Multi User (MU- 2


5 GHz 1.73 Gbps
wave2 160MHz MIMO)

802.11ac Single User (SU- 2


5 GHz 20, 40, 80MHz 866.7 Mbps
wave1 MIMO)

2.4 or 5 Single User (SU- 3


802.11n 20, 40MHz 450 Mbps
GHz MIMO)

802.11g 2.4 GHz 20 MHz N/A 54 Mbps

802.11a 5 GHz 20 MHz N/A 54 Mbps

802.11b 2.4 GHz 20 MHz N/A 11 Mbps

Legacy
2.4 GHz 20 MHz N/A 2 Mbps
802.11

1
 2 Spatial streams with 1024-QAM modulation.
2
2 Spatial streams with 256-QAM modulation.
3
3 Spatial streams with 64-QAM modulation.

802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6)
Ratification expected in Q4 2019.
Supports both 2.4 & 5 GHz
Antenna transmit /
 Mode Maximum rate India (English)
Receive arrangements   
1 TX (Transmit, Upload)
1x1 20 MHz 143 Mbps
1 RX (Receive, Download)

2 TX
2x2 20 MHz 287 Mbps
2 RX

1 TX
1x1 40 MHz 287 Mbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 40 MHz 574 Mbps
2 RX

1 TX
1x1 80 MHz 601 Mbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 80 MHz 1.2 Gbps
2 RX

1 TX
1x1 160 MHz 1.2 Gbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 160 MHz 2.4 Gbps
2 RX

802.11ac wave2
Released in June 2016.
Key New Features for Wi-Fi clients:
Multi-User MIMO
160 MHz channels

Antenna transmit /
Mode Maximum rate
Receive arrangements

1 TX (Transmit, Upload)
1x1 40 MHz 200 Mbps
1 RX (Receive, Download)

2 TX
2x2 40 MHz 400 Mbps
2 RX

1 TX
1x1 80 MHz 433 Mbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 80 MHz 866 Mbps
2 RX

1 TX
1x1 160 MHz 866 Mbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 160 MHz 1.73 Gbps
2 RX

802.11ac wave1
Released in January 2014.
Data rates varying modulation types and number of spatial streams; 200 Mbps, 400
Mbps, 433 Mbps, 600 Mbps, 867 Mbps. See table below.
24 non-overlapping unlicensed national information infrastructure (UNII) channels
in 5 GHz frequency band.

Antenna transmit /
Mode Maximum rate
Receive arrangements

1 TX
1x1 40 MHz 200 Mbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 40 MHz 400 Mbps
2 RX
1 TX
 1x1 80 MHz 433 Mbps India (English)
1 RX   
2 TX
2x2 80 MHz 866 Mbps
2 RX

802.11n
Data rates with varying modulation types: 1, 2, 5.5, 6, 9, 11, 12, 18, 24, 36, 48, 54
Mbps (see table below)
Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM) using multiple-input/multiple-
output (MIMO) and channel bonding (CB)
Three non-overlapping channels in industrial, scientific, medical (ISM) frequency
band at 2.4 GHz
12 non-overlapping unlicensed national information infrastructure (UNII) channels
in 5 GHz frequency band with and without CB

We recommend channel bonding for the 5 GHz because there are a limited
Note
number of non-overlapping channels available in the 2.4 GHz band.

Antenna transmit /
Mode Maximum rate
Receive arrangements

1 TX
1x1 20 MHz 72.2 Mbps
1 RX

1 TX
1x1 40 Mhz 150 Mbps
1 RX

2 TX
2x2 20 MHz 144.4 Mbps
2 RX

2 TX
2x2 40 MHz 300 Mbps
2 RX

3 TX
3x3 20 MHz 216.7 Mbps
3 RX

3 TX
3x3 40 MHz 450 Mbps
3 RX

802.11g
Released in 2003.
Data rates with varying modulation types: 6, 9, 12, 18, 24, 36, 48 and 54 Mbps; can
revert to 1, 2, 5.5, and 11 Mbps using DSSS and CCK.
Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM) with 52 subcarrier channels;
backwards compatible with 802.11b using DSSS and CCK.
Three non-overlapping channels in industrial, scientific, medical (ISM) frequency
band at 2.4 GHz.

802.11a
Released in 1999.
Data rates with varying modulation types: 6, 9, 12, 18, 24, 36, 48 and 54 Mbps.
Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing (OFDM) with 52 subcarrier channels.
12 non-overlapping unlicensed national information infrastructure (UNII) channels
in 5 GHz frequency band.

802.11b
Released in 1999.
Data rates with varying modulation types: 1, 2, 5.5 and 11 Mbps.
High-rate direct-sequence spread spectrum (HR-DSSS).
Three non-overlapping channels in industrial, scientific, medical (ISM) frequency
band at 2.4 GHz.

Legacy 802.11
Released in 1997.
Two raw data rates of 1 and 2 Mbps.
 Frequency hopping spread spectrum (FHSS) or direct-sequence India (English)  
spread spectrum 
(DSSS).
Three non-overlapping channels in industrial, scientific, medical (ISM) frequency
band at 2.4 GHz.
Originally defined carrier sense multiple access with collision avoidance (CSMA-CA).

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