Wi-Fi: Types, Workings, and Applications

Wi-Fi: Types, Workings, and Applications

Wi-Fi, also known as WLAN, has been in our mobile phones and laptops since our childhood. And now it has become a necessity for human beings. We can’t imagine a single day using Wi-Fi on our devices. If you are working in the software industry, then you know the importance of Wi-Fi and what will happen if this technology was never invented. 

Today we will talk about Wi-Fi in this article and its IEEE standards for Wi-Fi also.


The Wi-Fi concept is very old, from around 1971 when an ALOHA system was used for wireless connection between Hawaii island via a network. Wi-Fi has evolved for decades in terms of speeds or features. At one time speed was not a concern of Wi-Fi; its objective was to share or exchange information, but in modern days it is all about internet speed and Wi-Fi is providing the best speed of more than 1Gb/s.

What is Wi-Fi?

Wi-Fi is a very old concept of wireless networking technology which used to share the internet interface between your electronic devices like computers, laptops, printers, and mobile phones.

The first version of Wi-Fi is 802.1, and it was released in 1997 and supports a link speed of 2 Mb/s. Then many versions of Wi-Fi are released offering new features and high link speeds.

The recent version of Wi-Fi is 802.11ac released in 2014 which provides a whopping speed of 1733 Mb/s in the 5GHz band.

There are many 802.11 wireless standards, which we will talk about later in this article.

Wi-Fi is just a brand name for marketing purposes by a Wi-Fi Alliance, which refers to a communication medium for wireless networks which works as a local area network without the use of any cables or wire.

Wi-Fi works utilizing the physical link layer. It is also known as WLAN.

Features of Wi-Fi

  1. Wi-Fi technology does not require any set of cables and wires. You can share information on the internet wirelessly.
  2. Wi-Fi comes with a scalable and robust performance on which one relies because it’s smart enough to provide security to your computer or device.
  3. Wi-Fi Technology has great power for consumption as compared to other networks. You can get high-speed internet. It doesn’t have any range limitations.
  4. Wi-Fi connection setup is very easy and one can rely on the Wi-Fi technology as it protects your data with its tools.
  5. Wireless streaming of video or audio is very easy with Wi-Fi technology on any device.

Application of Wi-Fi

  1. Sharing of data between two devices wirelessly can be easily done by Wi-Fi on a very high data transfer rate.
  2. Wi-Fi is widely used in offices, schools, and colleges to interconnect computers and share internet and data without any cables or wires.
  3. Wi-Fi’s can also be used as a hotspot.
  4. The Internet can be accessed easily and wirelessly on any Wi-Fi enabled device.
  5. Wi-Fi is also used in the Automotive industry. A passenger can control music, lights, and windshield with help of Wi-Fi.

How does Wi-Fi work?

Electromagnetic waves are used in Wi-Fi technology to transfer networks. A router is necessary for the working of Wi-Fi properly.

This router device is capable of sending information and connecting devices to the internet. Wi-Fi uses radio waves to transmit signals. By the means of frequencies in a radio wave, two devices can be connected to share information. Mainly two types of frequencies are used in Wi-Fi, 2.4 GHz, and 5 GHz. 

Reading of data from electronic devices and routers is done in a binary form. There are three elements of a Wi-Fi signal, which are as follows,

  • Base Station: It is the main hub from which network connection is distributed to the routers.
  • Access point or Router: These are the devices that receive wired connections and convert them to the wireless network in the form of radio waves.
  • Accessing devices: Devices like, laptop, computers, mobile phones, etc can be used to access the internet connection wirelessly.

Types of Wi-Fi Standards

There are a total of seven wireless network standards now, which are as follows,

Wi-Fi-802.11a(Wi-Fi 1): This wireless network standard was introduced in 1999. It uses a frequency bandwidth of 5 GHz and provides a data transmission speed of 54 Mb/s.

Wi-Fi-802.11b(Wi-Fi 2): This wireless network standard was introduced in 1999. It uses a frequency bandwidth of 2.4 GHz and provides a data transmission speed of 11 Mb/s.

Wi-Fi-802.11g(Wi-Fi 3): This wireless network standard was introduced in 2003. It uses a frequency bandwidth of 2.4 GHz and provides a data transmission speed of 54 Mb/s. 

Wi-Fi-802.11n(Wi-Fi 4): This wireless network standard was introduced in 2009. It uses a frequency bandwidth of both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. It also provides a max high speed of 600 Mb/s. 

Wi-Fi- 802.11ac(Wi-Fi 5): This wireless network standard was introduced in 2013. It supports a frequency bandwidth of 5 GHz and provides a maximum speed of 1.3 Gb/s. 

Wi-Fi- 802.11ax(Wi-Fi 6): This wireless network standard was introduced in 2020 by Huawei. It supports a frequency bandwidth of both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz and provides a maximum speed of 3 Gb/s. 

Wi-Fi- 802.11be(Wi-Fi 7): This wireless network standard is very recent and under development Wi-Fi by the IEEE team. This Wi-Fi can be termed as Wi-Fi 7.

Here are a few more terminologies

  • SSID: SSID (Service Set Identifier) is a 32-bit unique character name for every Wi-Fi network. It’s like an IP address, but for Wi-Fi only. We can differentiate in Wi-Fi using this SSID. In a context, SSID is a name for a wireless network.
  • WPA-PSK (Wi-Fi Protected Access- Pre-Shared Key): The Wi-Fi alliance developed a program to secure the wireless networks using pre-shared key authentication. Wi-Fi has three types of security, WPA, WPA2, and WPA3. By this, we can make our Wi-Fi signal security better from unwanted access.
  • Wi-Fi signals use Ad hoc networks, which allow communication between devices without using a Wi-Fi router.

How do our devices receive signals

Devices receive signals from the router wirelessly. Radio signals are transmitted from routers, which are received by the devices easily.

How do I fix a weak Wi-Fi signal

If you are receiving a slow and weak Wi-Fi signal, try to use a modem cable and then connect your device to the Wi-Fi and perform a speed test. Still, if the connection is slow then try to update your router and for a longer range you can buy a Wi-Fi extender also.

What if my Wi-Fi only works in certain places

Wi-Fi works only in Wi-Fi enabled devices, sometimes it’s also about version compatibility. If your Wi-Fi doesn’t work in certain places, try to change or revert the default configuration setting on Wi-Fi or the router. This may help you to connect with a router device.

Benefits of Wi-Fi

  1. Wi-Fi is very easy to set up; Just an SSID and password are required to start it.
  2. Wi-Fi can also provide hotspots.
  3. WPA encryptions are used in Wi-Fi, which makes it secure.
  4. Roaming is also supported easily in Wi-Fi.
  5. It has very flexible connectivity without any wired connections.
  6. It is expandable through Wi-Fi extenders.
  7. The cost of Wi-Fi is low compared to any other technology.

Limitations of Wi-Fi

  1. Power is consumed highly if we are using Wi-Fi on electronic devices like Mobile phones, Laptops, or Computers.
  2. Wi-Fi routers are power dependent which means it works through a power source, if there is a power cut then the connectivity is gone.
  3. Wi-Fi doesn’t have a firewall, which can make it prone to attackers.
  4. Internet speed can be low compared to direct cable connections.
  5. Wi-Fi can be easily hacked though it has encryption, but successful attempts of Wi-Fi hacking are seen.
  6. Climatic conditions are also affected by the use of Wi-Fi.


I hope now you know about Wi-Fi and its types from reading this article. Wi-Fi has captured and contributed to the world’s development in its way. Wi-Fi is used daily in day-to-day life by almost everyone. Wi-Fi is getting more advanced and has greater internet connectivity, and they will help us in our future building also.


What is Wi-Fi?

Wi-Fi is a wireless networking technology that offers information sharing and internet connectivity between devices. Wi-Fi is a series of wireless network protocols based on the IEEE 802.11 family of standards that are commonly used for device local area networking.

Where did the term Wi-Fi come from?

Wi-Fi stands for “Wireless Fidelity”, its name given for marketing purposes by Wi-Fi Alliance. The Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance, a worldwide non-profit group established to advance the new wireless standard, is credited with coining the term Wi-Fi.

What is the difference between the internet and Wi-Fi?

The Internet is a network, whereas Wi-Fi is a facility that provides the network. Wi-Fi is an online technology that is used to connect nearby devices. The Internet works on internet protocol, which joins computers on a network globally.

The Internet is a worldwide network, and Wi-Fi is a connection to the internet.

Why do we need Wi-Fi?

Wi-Fi is needed to cut off the wired services of cables and wires. One can easily use or share data without any hassle using Wi-Fi. Access to the Internet via devices such as smartphones and tablets to download books, music, movies, and apps, as well as access the online.

Does Wi-Fi mean the internet?

No, Wi-Fi and the internet are two different things. Wifi connects and communicates between nearby devices whereas the internet is a worldwide network connecting many computers on its protocol to communicate or share data.

Learn programming on codedamn

Codedamn is an interactive coding platform with tons of sweet programming courses that can help you land your first coding job. Here's how:

Programming is one of the most in-demand jobs today. Learning to program can change your future. All the best!

Sharing is caring

Did you like what Shivansh Raghuwanshi wrote? Thank them for their work by sharing it on social media.