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Neil Anderson talks to Channel Partners about 5G, Wi-Fi 6

WWT's Neil Anderson discusses 5G and Wi-Fi 6 with Channel Partners ahead of his session at Channel Partners Evolution Conference, September 10, 2019. Neil will discuss: What is Wi-Fi 6, how designs for Wi-Fi deployments will need to fundamentally change, and new capabilities that will be possible. He will also touch on how Wi-Fi 6 and 5G are complementary technologies, including how each will solve challenges that existed in previous Wi-Fi network generations.

By Jeffrey Schwartz

Few things are hyped more than the coming of 5G and Wi-Fi 6 when it comes to next-generation wireless networks. Nevertheless, both new wireless technologies must be part of any discussion with a client looking to deploy a new network or upgrade an existing one.

Neil Anderson is an expert on both 5G and Wi-Fi 6 and will share insights from his discussions with customers at next month’s Channel Partners Evolution in Washington, D.C. Anderson is director of the  network solutions practice at World Wide Technology and his session, “Wi-Fi 6 and Your Customers,” Sept. 10, part of the 5G and Wi-Fi track presented with Light Reading and sponsored by Nextiva, will explain how to help customers understand what decisions they need to make.

WWT’s Neil Anderson

In advance of next month’s conference, Anderson talked with Channel Partners about both some of the long-tail technical and business considerations and implications of these new technologies.

Channel Partners: What are you seeing right now with Wi-Fi 6? Quite a few vendors have rolled out new access points that support Wi-Fi 6 but it doesn’t appear there are many endpoints yet that support it. So what do you advise clients about whether they should deploy it knowing that they will see little benefit from it in the short term?

Neil Anderson: We see a couple of things. An awful lot of our customer base skipped over Wi-Fi 5 [aka 802.11 AC] and are running with their Wi-Fi 4 [802.11n] network. A lot of customers were skeptical of the AC value. They typically said, “You know, I just did a refresh, do I really need to do another one when what we have works pretty well?” But what we’re also seeing is that the way people are using the network, wireless has become the primary network. And for new deployments, most are building out more modern office spaces that don’t lend themselves to wired access. And most of the Wi-Fi 4 networks were never built for that type of usage.

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