Comcast launches Wi-Fi 6E consumer gateway for faster home wireless internet

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Comcast announced that its latest xFi Advanced Gateway incorporates Wi-Fi 6E, which uses newly available spectrum to deliver a faster, more reliable wireless broadband in the home.

The device is Comcast’s most powerful home internet gateway, offering a boost capacity in the home with three Wi-Fi bands: 2.4 GHz, 5 GHz, and a new 6 GHz band. The company announced it at the CES 2022 tech trade show in Las Vegas.

This offering is important because cable companies will soon be under pressure from 5G wireless networks from mobile phone service providers, and that will put pressure on network pricing and make faster internet available to more people.

Together, these Wi-Fi bands reduce interference and increase bandwidth in the home by three times to support the influx of connected devices used by consumers today. The gateway is also Comcast’s first to support the speeds of the future — symmetrical gigabit speeds — to power connected homes in the future.

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“The next generation gateway underpins our commitment to providing the best whole-home WiFi experience with the fastest speeds, ultimate control, advanced cybersecurity protection, and broad coverage in the home,” said Dave Watson, CEO of Comcast Cable, in a statement. “We’re also making the latest advancement in WiFi available to our customers today, so their home networks are ready for all of the WiFi 6E capable devices that hit the shelves in the future.”

During the pandemic, this kind of advance is a necessity. People have to rely on shared Wi-Fi to work from home, meet friends and relatives on video calls, stream movies, shop online, exercise, play games, and order food.

The latest Wi-Fi is built on the 6E standard in the clear 6GHz band. The Wi-Fi 6E 6GHz Wi-Fi band adds more than double the bandwidth of 5GHz, resolving issues with interference and congestion in the 5GHz Wi-Fi band. and it enables multi-gigabit Wi-Fi speed for connected Wi-Fi 6E devices.

The older WiFi 5 (802.11ac) and WiFi 6 (802.11ax) gateways use the 2.4GHz and 5GHz radio frequencies to transmit data wirelessly within homes, businesses, and schools. Wi-Fi 6E extends the standard to include adjacent 6GHz frequencies, with 14 additional 80MHz channels and 7 additional 160MHz channels.

Wi-Fi 6E is capable of twice as many simultaneous connections. And it delivers multigigabit upload and download speeds to help ensure every game console, streaming TV, VR headset, laptop, and more receive the speeds they need.

Of course, for games, one of the big problems is latency. Comcast said users will see low lag times for those moments when response times matter most, like playing video games, virtual reality, or videoconferencing.

Customers who lease the xFi Advanced Gateway receive a full suite of complimentary services and products, including WiFi Controls for managing device access, setting parental controls, and pausing Wi-Fi. Comcast also has xFi Advanced Security, which helps protect all connected devices at the gateway level from malware and other cyber security threats.

Customers can also get optional Wi-Fi extenders, called xFi Pods, to extend Wi-Fi coverage to hard-to-reach corners of the home.

The xFi Advanced Gateway will begin rolling out to customers over the coming months, starting with those subscribing to gigabit internet or the xFi complete package.

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