Today, Cisco announced a series of hardware solutions, partnerships, and resources that support the in-development WiFi standard WiFi 6 (or 802.11ax). WiFi 6 is one of the latest WiFi standards currently finishing development, set to be fully released by the end of 2019. As companies prepare themselves for the introduction of WiFi 6, network hardware providers have begun to bring 802.11ax-compatible products to market. Cisco’s announcement shows the company’s commitment to WiFi 6 solutions, both in terms of hardware and resources for users.
The WiFi 6 hardware that Cisco announced includes new Catalyst and Meraki access points as well as a new addition to the Catalyst core switch lineup. The new access points allow for enterprises to take advantage of WiFi 6 while also providing customizable chipsets, data analytics with Cisco DNA, and multilingual support for IoT devices. Cisco also introduced the Catalyst 9600 series of core switches, which features higher speeds, bigger capacity, and intelligent security features.
In addition, Cisco introduced a new set of resources for developers, the DevNet Wireless Dev Center. They launched the resource in order to provide developers with information and knowledge about building applications that utilize WiFi 6. The new standard includes better throughput and device capacity, as well as reduces the battery usage of connected devices. These are all features developers can take advantage of when designing apps that can connect to a network.
“Every leap in connectivity enables the next wave of profound innovation. 5G and Wi-Fi 6 represent a new era of connectivity,” said David Goeckeler, Cisco’s EVP and General Manager, Networking and Security Business. “Developers are already creating the next generation of wireless-first, immersive experiences. With billions of things connecting to the network, this growth will create unprecedented complexity for IT. Cisco is building a multi-domain network architecture to simplify complexity for IT, allowing CIOs to deliver against their innovation agenda.”
To help build a more open and comprehensive WiFi infrastructure, Cisco announced partnerships with companies like Samsung, GlobalReach Technology, and Presidio to join their OpenRoaming project. This project, currently in beta, allows users to hop between wireless and cellular networks seamlessly, bridging the gap between WiFi and mobile networks like 5G.
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