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High-performance Wi-Fi solutions make smart home hubs and gateways faster and more connected

Wi-Fi has become a ubiquitous connection technology in today’s world and an important part of our daily work and life. Since the acquisition of Quantenna, ON semiconductor has become one of the global leaders in high-performance Wi-Fi solutions.

Wi-Fi has become a ubiquitous connection technology in today’s world and an important part of our daily work and life. Since the acquisition of Quantenna, ON Semiconductor has become one of the global leaders in high-performance Wi-Fi solutions.

Next-generation standard Wi-Fi 6 greatly improves connection speed and throughput

Wi-Fi is based on the IEEE 802.11 standard and has evolved from Wi-Fi 1 (802.11b), which was deployed in 1999, to Wi-Fi 6, which will be deployed in 2020. The most obvious improvement is the increase in data transmission speed. Wi-Fi 1 has a peak transfer rate of 11 Mbps, while Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) supports speeds up to 9.6Gbps, ten times that of Wi-Fi 5. In addition, Wi-Fi 6 also greatly improves throughput. For example, if you want to send a 3.8GB movie, it will take about 3850 seconds (64 minutes) to use Wi-Fi 1, and only about 4.5 seconds to use Wi-Fi 6, which is equivalent to about 1000 times faster ( 3 orders of magnitude) speed! Both Wi-Fi 6’s speed and throughput improvements benefit from multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) technology.

What is MIMO?

Traditional wireless systems communicate through a single antenna at the transmitter and a single antenna at the receiver, called single-input single-output (SISO). MIMO refers to a communication system with multiple antennas at both the transmitter and receiver, thereby improving the speed of sending and receiving data and the robustness of the signal. MIMO has been deployed since the Wi-Fi 4 standard in 2009, supporting 4 x 4 (that is, 4 transmit antennas and 4 receive antennas), and supports 8 x 8 MIMO to Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6. MIMO-enabled Wi-Fi was originally aimed at a single user, but in real life these data rate gains do not scale as expected because most client devices, especially mobile devices, have at most two transmitters and receivers, limiting space The multiplexing gain is a maximum of 2. The advent and rapid adoption of multi-user MIMO (MU-MIMO) promises to take full advantage of MIMO to multiple simultaneously operating devices. Therefore, in the home gateway, to maximize the utilization of MIMO capability, MU-MIMO is required. Quantenna, a subsidiary of ON Semiconductor, is the first Wi-Fi solution provider to support 4 x 4, 8 x 8 MIMO and MU-MIMO.

5G won’t replace Wi-Fi for the foreseeable future

The latest 5G technology and Wi-Fi 6 both mean faster connections, but their application scenarios, operating frequency bands, network latency, and spectrum certification are very different, so 5G will not be in the foreseeable future. Instead of Wi-Fi, they complement and synergize with each other.

The 5G standard is developed by the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) and is mainly used outdoors, and the Wi-Fi 6 standard is developed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and is more suitable for indoor use. According to the 3GPP standard, the 5G frequency band is divided into two ranges: FR1 and FR2. The frequency band of FR1 is lower than 6GHz, and the frequency band of FR2 is 24GHz to 52GHz. Since high-frequency signals are easily attenuated, more complex engineering is required. Wi-Fi 6 works at 2.4GHz, 5GHz and 6GHz. 5G spectrum needs to be licensed, while Wi-Fi 6 spectrum is license-free and easier to deploy. 5G data transmission rate is 1 to 10Gbps, Wi-Fi 6 is limited by network connection, and the transmission rate is up to 9.6Gbps. 5G supports high-speed mobile switching up to 350km per hour, while Wi-Fi 6 does not support high-speed mobile switching. 5G network latency is less than 1ms, and Wi-Fi 6 network latency depends on the core network, with a delay of 20 to 150ms.

How to Optimize Wi-Fi Performance

For Wi-Fi speeds that decrease with distance, ON Semiconductor offers 8 x 8 MIMO, 5 x 5 MIMO and beamforming technologies to extend Wi-Fi coverage. In order to solve the interference caused by adjacent Wi-Fi and other unauthorized networks, the Smart Self-Optimizing Network (SONiQ) software is provided to optimize Wi-Fi performance through Channel Selection and AP Steering. The SONiQ framework integrates a variety of routers, access points, repeaters and any other device in the Wi-Fi chipset portfolio with any system, allowing customers to control everything with a single software framework. For the situation where many different devices in the home compete for Wi-Fi, iQStream is used to implement a routing mechanism that intelligently selects paths through QoS priority. In addition, ON Semiconductor’s Wi-Fi 6 solution also supports the following features to achieve differentiated products: adaptive 8 x 8 MIMO, 8 spatial stream FB, ESP, background dynamic frequency selection (DFS), always-on DFS.

Adaptive 8×8 MIMO

8 x 8 MIMO is capable of increasing Wi-Fi data rates by 60% and dramatically reducing home end device disconnect rates while increasing coverage. Adaptive 8 x 8 MIMO switches between a single 8 x 8 or two 4 x 4 networks in real time to maximize client throughput.

8 Spatial Stream FB

Refers to processing 8 spatial stream client feedback for optimal performance of MIMO, such as supporting three 2 x 2 MU-MIMO clients.


For clients with less than 8 spatial stream FBs, reconstruct complete channel information, improve speed and expand coverage.

Background DFS

Up to 4 chains for 5GHz background scan.

Always-on DFS

Advanced hardware detects and isolates radar and sub-carriers. Stays longer than the competition on a clean DFS channel.

ON Semiconductor’s Wi-Fi Solution

Quantenna, a subsidiary of ON Semiconductor, currently covers enterprises, retailers and operators in the Wi-Fi field. The products provided include access points, routers, home gateways, Mesh nodes, etc., and will soon be extended to industrial, automotive, etc. through Wi-Fi 6 , Consumer Internet of Things (IoT) fields such as smart home, home entertainment and other IoT segments.

1. Access point/gateway compliant with Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6 standards

ON Semiconductor’s solution supports faster speed and coverage, with a maximum speed of over 10Gbps, up to 8 x 8 MIMO at 5GHz, 4 x 4 MIMO at 2.4GHz, motion detection using Qdock, and support for cloud analysis.

2. Mesh nodes that comply with Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6 standards

ON Semiconductor provides dual-band and triple-band solutions with speeds over 6Gbps, embedded in CPUs, with cost advantages, using Qdock for motion detection, and supporting cloud analysis.

3. A set-top box that complies with Wi-Fi 5 and Wi-Fi 6 standards

ON Semiconductor’s solution supports dual-band optional and dual-band concurrency, with a speed of 2Gbps. Differentiating features include: wireless live TV quality, faster speed/larger coverage, Mesh node function, motion detection using Qdock, and Support for cloud analytics.

Spartan turnkey solution

For the above access points/gateways and mesh nodes, ON Semiconductor provides almost “turnkey” solutions, such as Spartan for home hub/Mesh, including full-featured hardware and software design packages for authorized OEMs (OEM) and Original Design Manufacturer (ODM) to provide product design documentation, board manufacturing documentation, product housing documentation, and to facilitate OEM and ODM customization, generic pre-tested firmware and software development kits (SDK) are also provided to help OEMs and ODMs reduce cost and speed up time-to-market.

The latest Wi-Fi 6 Spartan router reference design is based on the QSR10GU-AX 8 x 8 MIMO dual-band dual-concurrent Wi-Fi 6 chipset, providing unmatched coverage and network capacity, accelerating deployment of best-in-class Wi-Fi 6 routers to Retail and carrier markets, addressing the increasing demand for wider home coverage while delivering the level of performance required for demanding applications such as 4K video streaming, online gaming, cloud syncing, and connecting an ever-increasing number of smart home products.

Operating on 12 spatial streams with 8 x 8 MIMO at 5GHz and 4 x 4 MIMO at 2.4GHz, the solution is equipped with 2.5G Ethernet wide area network (WAN) and local area network (LAN) ports, and a built-in proximity device for easy Wi-Fi pairing Field Communication (NFC) reader, and a hardware accelerator optimized for low latency and Quality of Service (QoS). Key features include true 8 x 8 spatial streaming sound, massive MU-MIMO and Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access (OFDMA), transmit beamforming, 1024-Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (1024-QAM), and Target Wake Time (TWT) and other Wi-Fi features. The SmartScan feature provides zero-wait DFS and enhanced scanning. The reference design includes ON Semiconductor’s Qdock, which supports third-party applications such as motion detection, channel state information (CSI) and radio frequency (RF) sensing to help simplify integration into customer applications.

Motion detection using Wi-Fi can be applied to traditional residential monitoring to detect intrusions in and around our homes or for scheduled maintenance, which could easily be extended to smart buildings, using motion and occupancy detection for heating, ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC) and Part of the lighting control building management system, it can also be used to monitor the elderly and vulnerable people in the home for peace of mind.


The next-generation Wi-Fi 6 standard will greatly increase connection speed and throughput, and the development of MU-MIMO technology will further enable manufacturers to fully utilize the potential of Wi-Fi. After acquiring Quantenna, a leading Wi-Fi technology leader, ON Semiconductor continues to create an overall Wi-Fi solution from silicon and systems to software with key technologies such as MU-MIMO, OFDMA, beamforming, DFS, and Qdock, to solve IoT problems. , automotive and smart home market connectivity application issues, such as the latest flagship solution Spartan routers provide excellent throughput, speed, coverage and cost-effectiveness, bringing enterprise-level performance to the smart home, comprehensive hardware and software to accelerate time-to-market.

The Links:   EVK71-050 KCS3224ASTT-X10