Three Wi-Fi 6E deployments in the US
Forty-four percent of service providers, technology vendors and enterprises plan to adopt Wi-Fi 6E in the next 12-18 months: Report
In October, the Wireless Broadband Alliance released its Annual Industry Report for 2023 and found that 53% of service providers, technology vendors and enterprises have deployed Wi-Fi 6, and an additional 44% said they are currently working to adopt Wi-Fi 6E in the next 12-18 months. This article looks at a few recent Wi-Fi 6E deployments across some of the verticals with the most to gain from upgrading their Wi-Fi networks.
In what is thought to be the largest deployment of its kind, the University of Michigan has installed 16,000 Aruba Wi-Fi 6E access points across 225 campus buildings.
One notable requirement for the deployment was that all personal devices should be able to receive HD-quality video even in the most densely populated areas, such as classrooms that can accommodate up to 500 students at a time. The additional channels offered by Wi-Fi 6E made such a requirement possible, according to Ravi Pendse, U-M’s VP for information technology and chief information officer. “It’s kind of like running Wi-Fi network for a city – but this city is very tech-savvy with very diverse requirements,” he said.
“This Wi-Fi network and service is transformative for U-M. We knew we needed the speeds and capacity afforded by Wi-Fi 6E because so much of the daily activity at U-M happens over Wi-Fi,” Pendse explained. “Huge amounts of data need to be exchanged for U-M to function. So these are among the major reasons why we decided to deploy this network – and of course the Wi-Fi service is not just for connecting personal devices. It connects the full breadth and depth of devices on campus including anything from cameras and sensors to robots.”
U-M’s network is also reportedly the world’s biggest single Passpoint-capable installation. Passpoint authentication removes the need for users to find and authenticate each time they want to get online after downloading a one-time profile to their mobile device, making device connectivity seamless and secure.
Last year, Novant Health became the first enterprise customer to announce the deployment of an enterprise-grade Wi-Fi 6E solution. Novant Health, headquartered in North Carolina, includes physician clinics, outpatient centers and hospitals.
For its deployment, the healthcare system installed Extreme Networks’ access points (APs) to provide high-speed Wi-Fi throughout its facilities and enable secure, dedicated connectivity for mission-critical healthcare applications and medical devices.
“Ubiquitous wireless connectivity is a necessity for both patient care and team member safety, and Wi-Fi 6E is already playing an important role in sustaining the necessary tools to assist staff in supporting our patients’ journey to health and wellness,” commented Rob Hale, manager of infrastructure and technical engineering at Novant Health. “The new Wi-Fi 6E APs from Extreme enable us to tap into a fast, secure, and interference-free spectrum, ensuring our most demanding and mission-critical, technology-dependent services can operate more reliably and with greater speed and performance.”
With Wi-Fi 6E, Novant Health can alsop rovide its patients with more reliable and convenient care through applications like digital communication tools, telehealth and safe and secure medical record management systems.
This fall, the Chase Center in San Francisco — the NBA champion Golden State Warriors’ home arena in San Francisco — installed more than 250 Wi-Fi 6E Aruba access points to enable thousands of fans to simultaneously stream videos and share photos, listen to the play-by-play commentary and pull up match statistics from the Warriors + Chase Center app.
According to Aruba, its enterprise-grade Wi-Fi 6E solution includes ultra tri-band filtering that dynamically adjusts the available channels, which eliminates signal interference and performance degradation. Further, the APs are IoT-ready with integrated Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and Zigbee support. This makes IoT deployment and management easier and enables use case asset tracking, security solutions and sensors.
“The Warriors are obsessed with creating world class experiences, and providing fast, reliable connectivity for sold out crowds of 18,000+ fans at games and events at Chase Center is an incredibly important part of that,” said Warriors President and Chief Operating Officer Brandon Schneider. “With the addition of Wi-Fi 6E Access Points in the arena bowl, we can provide fans a more immersive experience that we believe is unmatched by any other professional sporting venue.”
The Wi-Fi 6E APs were first live with the venue’s Alicia Keys concert on September 3, 2022.