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5G, 5G, but where art thou Wi-Fi?

The last couple of years tech news has been flooded with 5G. First, it was the promise of 5G and what it can do. Next it was the imminent roll out of 5G networks followed by cleverly marketed 4G product as 5GE – 5G Evolution or Long Term Evolution Evolution (Yes! This is not a typo! Even Word thought it was a typo and flagged it!). Then came the speed wars and the coverage wars and the obvious speed vs coverage wars. In the midst of all this Wi-Fi quietly introduced Wi-Fi 6 with mesh networking. Just as in 5G, Wi-Fi 6 comes with increased speed, extended capacity and better security taking advantage of some of the same antenna features from 5G. But the question has always been, does 5G deployment mean goodbye Wi-Fi? The short answer is – no! The best way to view 5G and Wi-Fi are as complimentary technologies. It is impractical, to put a SIM in every device. When Wi-Fi 6 and 5G-capable devices come out, all the existing laptops, tablets, and IoT devices that only have Wi-Fi are not going to magically disappear. There will either be Wi-Fi-only or Wi-Fi and 5G devices, but 5G is not going to replace Wi-Fi altogether. Also, if you look at the 5G radio network backbone, Wi-Fi is a component. The technologies are designed to coexist. It's one big happy family - but there is sure to be some sibling rivalry!

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