WiFi 6 Certified?

  • Just started researching and I'm leaning towards the Alien.

    One possible concern is that it doesn't seem to be WiFi 6 certified. Is that true?

    If it's not, are there any downsides?

  • Correct, you should hold for the wifi 6e version. This version came out before the wifi 6 rules were certified.

  • @lostinbuffalo10 WiFi 6E is an add-on to the WiFi 6 standards. The Alien router is listed as WiFi 6 certified by the WiFi Alliance. I just checked.

  • @Richard1864 6E requires a hardware revision change since the Alien did not ship with that chip/radio inside it. Alien shipped with pre wifi 6.

  • @lostinbuffalo10 I know. I meant 6E is an add-on to WiFi 6; it wasn’t originally part of the WiFi 6 specs. The hardware in the Alien is now WiFi 6 certified, but NOT WiFi 6E certified, because of that hardware difference. There won’t be any 6E routers for months yet, earliest, and nothing that can take advantage of it for months after that.

  • 802.11ax is still officially "In Progress" as of 6/19/2020...

    The WG finalized the draft submission of 802.11ax around September 2019, which is what the WiFi Alliance used as the basis for their WiFi 6 certification program

    Ratification is normally just a formality, and was predicted for Q1 2020, but delayed due to the COVID-19 situation

    No shipping product can technically be compliant to 802.11ax since the standard does not officially exist yet

    But products can be "WiFi 6 Certified" to the finalized draft standard by the WiFi Alliance

    WiFi 6E is just 802.11ax extended to the 6 GHz band

    The AmpliFi Alien is currently missing required features in publicly released firmware necessary for WiFi 6 Certification, such as WPA 3 and 160 MHz channel widths

    The Alien router is listed as WiFi 6 certified by the WiFi Alliance. I just checked.

    Hi @Richard1864 - can you please send a link to this Alien WiFi 6 certification listing?

    A lot of us have been looking for, and waiting for this, but I still can't find it on https://www.wi-fi.org/

    That is great news that AmpliFi has finished the necessary updates and FCC approvals for WiFi 6 certification

  • One possible concern is that it doesn't seem to be WiFi 6 certified. Is that true?

    Hi @Shige-Abe - it is true as of the latest firmware release v3.4.0

    The Alien is currently missing 2 features required for WiFi 6 Certification...

    • WPA 3
    • 160 MHz Channel Widths

    AmpliFi has stated they are investigating and working on WiFi-6 certification, but the 160 MHz channel widths would need to go through regulatory testing, such as the FCC in the US, so it can be a slow process

    If it's not, are there any downsides?

    That's very debatable
    The Alien only has gigabit Ethernet ports, so a typical WiFi-6 2x2 MIMO connection @ 80 MHz can already potentially saturate the ports @ ~1,200 Mbps

    And how much more secure WPA 3 is versus WPA 2 and earlier is also debatable, although WPA 3 is the latest standard and if you have WPA 3 devices, they would be upgraded as it matures

    If you really want and need those 2 features, even just for the idea of future proofing the product, then it would be better to wait and see if the Alien implements them and achieves WiFi-6 certification

    If you don't need those 2 features specifically, then the Alien performs well for what it is capable of, as long as you take into consideration the spec's, like a lack of multi-gigabit ports especially if they do implement 160 MHz channel widths

    If you are not in desperate need of a new router, then you may consider waiting for the WiFi 6E product lines to be announced and shipping towards the end of 2020 and into 2021...

  • @Derek-Saville I was told Alien was certified when talking via phone to the WiFi Alliance over another issue related to work, and asked about the Alien router, saying I couldn’t see it listed. Specifically, I was told it would meet all required specs after 160 MHz was added via firmware update, WPA3 was optional because of major legacy device compatibility issues with WPA3, and would be added to the list online when the updated firmware is released.

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