Why is everyone crazy about Iliad’s WiFi 7 router?

Why is everyone crazy about Iliad's WiFi 7 router?

In early January 2024, WiFi 7 has officially become a standard approved by the Wi-Fi Alliance. This is the most recent incarnation of wireless technology which inherits the characteristics of previous solutions and, for the first time, ensures the possibility of using three frequency bands: 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz and 6 GHz. Today there is a lot of talk about router WiFi 7 Iliad, the first to support the new standard provided by a telecommunications operator in Europe. We’ll see what it is later.

Already WiFi 6E has allowed, rather recently, the possibility of bringing wireless communications to the frequencies of 6 GHz. Its adoption by networking equipment manufacturers has been rather limited. WiFi 7 is the first “iteration” of the technology that spans all available bands to be accepted with great interest. And in fact, right at the beginning of 2024, the process began certification of WiFi 7 compatible devices, under the supervision of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

At the moment there are not many WiFi 7 routers available on the market and those that are available are currently marketed at truly exorbitant prices. But WiFi 7 is one of those “upgrades” that cannot, in our opinion, be ignored.

The reasons why WiFi 7 deserves to be adopted

Although WiFi 7 allows you to extend the spectrum of the frequencies that can be used for one’s own communications and, for example, move them to a less crowded band (such as the 6 GHz one), it must be said that in Europe the portion of frequencies available to users is decidedly “neutered” compared to, for example, that supplied in the USA.

In the case of WiFi 7 the same considerations that we have seen in the case of the 6 GHz frequencies available in Europe with WiFi 6E apply. The band that can actually be engaged in Europe and in general in the Old Continent is in fact only that included between the 5925 e i 6425 MHz. On the other side of the ocean, however, you can even go up to 7125 MHz.

Apart from this aspect, however, having a single standard capable of supporting communications on 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz and 6 GHz offering more bandwidth for wireless data transfer is a really positive thing.

In another article we saw what WiFi 7 is and what its main features are.

Here we simply point out that with WiFi 7 the channel width it can reach up to 320 MHz (compared to the maximum 160 MHz of WiFi 6). Furthermore, to defend oneself from interference and optimize the actually usable bandwidth, WiFi 7 uses the technique called Preamble puncturing. The standard allows you to isolate any interference present on the channel and use the entire remaining portion of the spectrum (which was not previously possible).

The so-called Multi-Link Operation (MLO), also a prerogative of WiFi 7, also opens up the possibility of transmitting simultaneously on multiple frequency bands (for example 5 GHz and 6 GHz) towards the same client. The benefits are tangible both in terms of bandwidth (it is finally possible to add the bandwidth available across multiple different frequencies) and latency.

The Iliad offer which offers FTTH fiber connectivity and WiFi 7 router gets people talking a lot

So far we have limited ourselves to highlighting only some of the benefits of WiFi 7 which not only increases performance but optimizes wireless network management. For further information, we suggest consulting the article mentioned previously.

Iliad’s offer on promotion at 19.99 euros per month (forever) is causing a lot of talk precisely because it relieves users of the need to purchase an expensive WiFi 7 router themselves and also provides connectivity in fibra FTTH (Fiber-to-the-Home) up to 5 Gbps (divided between WiFi and Ethernet ports) in the areas reached with the FTTH EPON network (Ethernet Passive Optical Network).

Iliad is the first telecommunications operator to offer, in our country, a router in comodato of free use with WiFi 7 technology. Obviously the device is backward compatible with the previous standards: also because, as we have often remembered, to take advantage of WiFi 7 it is necessary that the client devices also support the standard.

In short, it is not enough to have a “latest trend” WiFi 7 router to access the better performance wireless: it is essential that the clients are compatible. WiFi 7 is also known by the acronym IEEE 802.11be.

While waiting to update all clients to WiFi 7, it might therefore make sense to opt for a router that already supports the standard (“future-proof”) but which does not require a heavy financial outlay. The new iliadbox it does just this, as the device is effectively delivered to every fiber user at no cost (included in the monthly subscription fee).

Fiber connection bandwidth vs WiFi 7 bandwidth

On paper, as the Wi-Fi Alliance states, WiFi 7 allows you to obtain transfer speed data up to 46 Gbps in optimal conditions. This is an improvement equal to approximately 4.8 times the maximum threshold of WiFi 6 and WiFi 6E. Obviously, don’t expect to ever see these values. The reality of the facts often brings us back down to earth. There are many (too many) factors that influence the performance of the WiFi connection and the performance it ensures.

In fact, however, it may happen that the data transfer potential of a WiFi 7 connection may even exceed the bandwidth provided by the network provider. Also because Iliad itself declares that the sum of the network bandwidth available on the various ports of its router cannot currently exceed 5 Gbps. Translated, the FTTH EPON connection does not offer more than 5 Gbps download overall; FTTH GPON connection no more than 2.5 Gbps download.

Net of all this, a WiFi 7 router like that of Iliad can benefit from all the advantages of the new standard summarized above and also speed up data transfers within the same local network.

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