Design Considerations for Next-Generation Wi-Fi Standards

Over the course of two decades, Wi-Fi has evolved from a technology delivering 1Mbps to a multi-Gigabit transmission technology, creating ever new challenges along the way for system design and for RF design in particular. The IEEE 802.11 Working Group responsible for the definition of Wi-Fi is currently engaged in the definition of the next generation of Wi-Fi, officially called 802.11be and colloquially known as Wi-Fi 7. Wi-Fi 7 aims to increase the link throughput to over 30Gbps. Achieving this goal will require increased channel bandwidth (up to 320MHz), operation in new frequency bands (6GHz), increased modulation order (4096 QAM), multi-channel operation and more. In this tutorial, we will outline the salient features of 802.11be and how they compare with previous generations of Wi-Fi. We will address design considerations imposed by the new standard requirements, with particular focus on RF design.