Three simple checks to check if your Windows computer is equipped with a WiFi 6 compatible wireless card.
Approved in February 2021, WiFi 6 is one of the latest standards for wireless communications. In another article we have seen what WiFi 6 is and if it is really essential .
The WiFi 6 standard itself is also known as 802.11 ax : so much so that routers with the abbreviation AX in the model name are precisely the compatible ones.
We have seen the meaning of the abbreviations of the routers on the market today.
For fiber optic connections it is not necessary to use a WiFi 6 router , at least not strictly speaking. In purely theoretical terms WiFi 6 allows you to reach 9.6 Gbps of bandwidth but in practice a medium-level WiFi 6 router could be decidedly less performing than a high-profile WiFi 5 device.
In the best case a WiFi 6 router used with a 2×2 WiFi 6 client can allow wireless data transfer at 1 Gbps. If you enable a dual-stream or quad-stream connection, 2.4 and 4.8 Gbps respectively can only be achieved when WiFi clients connect using a 160 MHz channel. There are many WiFi 6 compatible client devices that do not support channels at 160 MHz.
So be careful not to get caught up in the frenzy of WiFi 6 at all costs because the performance observed on the client side could be very far from what was expected.
How to check if a Windows system is WiFi 6 compatible
Obviously, if a WiFi 6 802.11 ax router is used but the connected client is WiFi 5 or WiFi 4, the maximum achievable performance is that of the “slower” device.
To understand if the Windows system in use is compatible with WiFi 6 or not, a simple check can be performed.
Just press the Windows+X key combination , choose Device Manager , both in Windows 10 and in Windows 11, then double-click on the Network adapters section .
In the Network adapters section you can find references to Ethernet, WiFi and virtual adapters (for example added by virtualization software such as Hyper-V and Virtualbox).
Already reading the name of the WiFi card installed in the PC, it should be understood whether or not it supports WiFi 6: as usual, in fact, the presence of the acronym AX confirms compatibility with WiFi 6 (AC and N refer to WiFi 4 and WiFi 5) .
By double clicking on the name of the adapter to access its properties window then selecting the Advanced tab , you will find a number of technical details.
Scrolling through the various properties that follow one another in the left pane, you should find the item Wireless mode 802.11n/ac/ax to confirm compatibility with the WiFi 6 standard.
If vice versa you read, for example, only 802.11n/ac wireless mode means that support for wireless connectivity stops at the WiFi 5 standard (802.11 ac).
Alternatively, you can also open the Windows command prompt by typing cmd in the search box or in the Open field that appears by pressing Windows+R .
Typing netsh wlan show drivers and examining the information next to Supported Radio Frequency Types can verify the presence or absence of the reference to the 802.11ax standard.
To extract only the information that interests you, you can issue the following command and press Enter: