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Increased capacity, high data rates, improved performance on crowded paces, and low battery consumption is what the new Wi-Fi 6 standard brings to the market.
Wi-Fi 6 is here, and it brings significant improvements over the last version. For first impressions, the Wi-Fi Alliance ditched the weird naming mechanisms of the previous Wi-Fi standards and instead used generations and version numbers. As a result, the new 802.11ax is referred to Wi-Fi 6, 802.11ac as Wi-Fi 5, and 802.11n will be Wi-Fi 4. The new Wi-Fi 6 is backward compatible with the past versions so you can connect your old devices to a Wi-Fi 6 router or connect Wi-Fi 6 smartphones to a Wi-Fi 5 access point.
In this article, we bring you all the smartphones that support Wi-Fi 6 and determine whether or not you should upgrade to this new Wi-Fi version.
What is Wi-Fi 6?
Wi-Fi 6 is the next generation of Wi-Fi. It picks from the 802.11ac standard, now known as Wi-Fi 5, and it brings more efficiency and performance to ensure connected devices perform at an optimum level. It is the generation that brings significant improvements, not just in speed, but overall performance in terms of interoperability, security, and battery usage.
The Key Benefits of Wi-Fi 6
The new generation of Wi-Fi will top at 9.6Gbps, which is a significant upgrade from the 3.5Gbps of Wi-Fi 5. However, while Wi-Fi 6 isn’t all about speeds. While it can reach theoretical speeds of almost 10Gbps, good luck getting closer to that. The rates will largely depend on your internet plans or the number of devices using the bandwidth.
Here are the significant benefits that the new Wi-Fi 6 smartphones will bring:
Better Performance in Dense Environments
Wi-Fi 6 significant upgrades come in populated areas such as shopping malls, airports, and stadiums. When using the last generation of Wi-Fi, you’re most likely to experience a dip in performance when in crowded areas. That’s because most access points (AP) cannot handle multiple channels and concurrent downlink traffic, leading to slow Wi-Fi connections.
Orthogonal frequency division multiple access (OFDMA) lets APs share channels to improve network efficiency in dense and demanding environments. Multi-user multiple input, multiple output (MI-MIMO), on the other hand, allows APs to handle more devices concurrently. For instance, your router can talk to different smartphones at once, and different phones respond to the AP at the same time. With this, various people can download content on their phones simultaneously without a drop in Wi-Fi speed.
Other benefits that ship with Wi-Fi 6 include improved battery efficiency and security. Wi-Fi 6 uses target wake time to manage communications between the router and other devices for efficient performance and save on battery power. All Wi-Fi 6 certified devices must implement WPA3 security protocol, which prevents hackers from cracking your passwords.
Should You Upgrade to Wi-Fi 6?
Before moving to the new Wi-Fi 6 standard, there are a few things to note. Wi-Fi 6 isn’t mainstream yet; it’s just getting started. Therefore, expect to see fewer devices that support this new generation Wi-Fi. For smartphones, only the iPhone 11 series, Samsung Galaxy Note 10 and S10 series, and the Galaxy Fold 5G, support Wi-Fi 6.
Also, it would help if you had a Wi-Fi 6 router to enjoy the full range of 802.11ax Wi-Fi. While these phones still work with the last generation Wi-Fi, you need to pair it with a Wi-Fi 6 router to unlock the increased speeds and improved performance in demanding environments. With all the consideration in mind, here is a table of all the Wi-Fi 6 smartphones compared. We will update the list as more Wi-Fi 6 smartphones enter the market.
Wi-Fi 6 Smartphones Comparison Table
|Apple iPhone 11||Specs: 6.1”, Liquid Retina HD, 1792 x 828p, Face ID, Rated IP68, iOS 13, A13 Bionic chip. |
Up to 256GB, 4GB RAM
|Dual camera: 12MP Ultra Wide and Wide. 12MP TrueDepth Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps.||3110 mAh Li-Ion Non-removable, up to 17 hours video playback. Fast charging 18W, Qi wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Apple iPhone 11 Pro||Specs: 5.8”, Super Retina XDR, 2436 x 1125p, Face ID, Rated IP68, iOS 13, A13 Bionic chip. |
Up to 512GB, 4GB RAM
|Triple 12MP Ultra Wide, Wide, and Telephoto. 12MP TrueDepth Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps.||3046 mAh Li-Ion Non-removable, up to 18 hours video playback. Fast charging 18W, Qi wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Apple iPhone 11 Pro Max||Specs: 6.5”, Super Retina XDR, 2688 x 1242p, Face ID, Rated IP68, iOS 13, A13 Bionic chip. |
Up to 512GB, 4GB RAM
|Triple 12MP Ultra Wide, Wide, and Telephoto. 12MP TrueDepth Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps||3969 mAh Li-Ion Non-removable, up to 20 hours video playback. Fast charging 18W, Qi wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Samsung Galaxy Note 10||Specs: 6.3” FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED Infinity-O, 2280 x 1080, HDR10+, Rated IP68, S Pen, Android 9 (Pie), Snapdragon 855. |
Up to 256GB, 8GB RAM
|Triple camera: 16MP Ultra Wide + 12MP Wide + 12MP Telephoto. 10MP Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps||3500 mAh, Li-Ion Non-removable. Fast charging 24W. WPC and PMA wireless charging||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Samsung Galaxy Note 10+||Specs: 6.8”, Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED Infinity-O, 3040 x 1440p, HDR10+, Rated IP68, S Pen, Android 9 (Pie), Snapdragon 855. |
Up to 512GB, 12GB RAM + MicroSD (up to 1TB)
|Quad camera: 16MP Ultra Wide + 12MP Wide + 12MP Telephoto + DepthVision. 10MP Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps||4300 mAh, Li-Ion Non-removable. Fast charging 24W. WPC and PMA wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi‑Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Samsung Galaxy S10e||Specs: 5.8”, Full HD+ Dynamic AMOLED, 2280 x 1080p, HDR10+, Rated IP68, Android 9 (Pie), Snapdragon 855. |
Up to 256GB 8GB RAM + MicroSD (up to 512GB)
|Dual camera: 16MP Ultra Wide + 12MP Wide. 10MP Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps.||3100mAh Non-removable. Fast charging 15W. WPC and PMA wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi-Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Samsung Galaxy S10||Specs: 6.1″ Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED, 3040 x 1440p, HDR10+, Rated IP68, Android 9 (Pie), Snapdragon 855. |
Up to 512GB 8GB RAM + MicroSD (512GB)
|Triple camera: 16MP Ultra Wide + 12MP Wide + 12MP Telephoto. 10MP Selfie. 4K video up to 60fps.||3400mAh Non-removable. Fast charging 15W. WPC and PMA wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi-Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
|Samsung Galaxy S10+||Specs: 6.4″ Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED, 3040 x 1440p, HDR10+, Rated IP68, Android 9 (Pie), Snapdragon 855. |
Up to 1TB 12GB RAM + MicroSD (up to 512GB)
|Triple camera: 16MP Ultra Wide + 12MP Wide + 12MP Telephoto. Dual Front Camera: 10MP Selfie + 8MP RGB Depth. 4K video up to 60fps.||4100mAh Non-removable. Fast charging 15W. WPC and PMA wireless charging.||802.11ax Wi-Fi 6. Bluetooth v5.0|
We have reviewed some of the best picks from the table above to help you select the ideal option for specific needs:
1. iPhone 11 Pro Max – Best Wi-Fi 6 Smartphone
The iPhone 11 Pro Max barely has any flaws, with an excellent screen, sound operating system, triple camera system, and impressive battery life.
iPhone 11 Pro Max is a sequel of the iPhone XS and XS, and it brings even more impressive specs than the 11 Pro. Still, the Pro Max maintains the usual iPhone design; however, it sports a stainless-steel build with a frosted finish that doesn’t attract fingerprints. It is rated IP68 water-resistant, which means it can endure up to 4 meters underwater for up to 30 minutes.The frost finish keeps fingerprints off the iPhone 11 Pro Max, so you won’t spend most of your time getting rid of them.
The Pro Max is a large phone with a 6.5-inch screen display; you might need both hands to reach the top of the screen or the control buttons. The display is a Super Retina XDR OLED with a 2688 x 1242-pixel resolution for bright visuals. The Pro Max gets very bright with a peak brightness of 1200 nits while the True Tone Technology lets you bring your images, videos, and games to life.
Like the other iPhone 11 series, the Pro Max features the smart and intelligent A13 Bionic chip and iOS 13. It is a swift processor that’s 20 percent faster than the last generation iPhone XS. You’re in for immersive experience, whether playing games, switching between apps, or watching movies. However, the real deal of the iPhone 11 Pro Max is in terms of battery life and cameras.
Onboard, you get triple cameras that include a 12MP ultra-wide, wide, and tele shooters. Shooting in the dark is no longer a problem with an impressive Night Mode features, which lets you take amazing shots at night. Record 4K videos up to 60fps or enjoy the slow-motion features both in the rear and the 12M selfie camera.
- Beautiful and robust waterproof design
- Bright display with realistic contrasts and color performance
- The fastest chip on an iPhone yet
- Excellent battery performance with fast charging
- Fantastic picture quality and video
- Included fast charging adapter
- There is no headphone slot
- Still no USB-C port
2. Samsung Galaxy S10+ – Best Android Smartphone with Wi-Fi 6
The Galaxy S10+ goes hard on the cameras and battery life, making it the best android phone available right now.
If the Wi-Fi 6 support doesn’t convince you then, the triple rear cameras with dual selfies and the 4100mAh battery definitely will. The S10+ provides competitive specs to rival the iPhone 11 Pro Max, while also providing expandable storage up to 512GB. It comes in an aluminum frame, corning gorilla glass 6, and IP68 dust ad water-resistant rating.The Samsung S10+ is the most feature-rich and polished android smartphone that comes with its Infinity-O display to rival the iPhone’s notch design.
Galaxy S10+ comes with a virtually frameless infinity display for immersive content. The 6.4-inch OLED display features a 3040 x 1440p resolution and supports HDR10+ dynamic content for realistic colors and contrasts. The Android Pie UI is much better compared to the last operating system, while the Snapdragon 855 chip brings more features such as the next-gen Wi-Fi 6.
The S10+ takes it to the next level with the triple back and dual front cameras. The rear cameras include a 16MP ultrawide, 12MP wide, and 12MP telephoto that lets you take drastic shots. The double front cameras let you shoot Live Focus Photographs with plenty of effects, including blur. Like the iPhone 11 Pro Max, the S10+ supports 4K video recording up to 60fps.
- Striking display
- A unique and beautiful design
- Excellent battery life
- Superb camera performance
- USB-C port
- Not the best for low light photos
- No autofocus on the ultrawide cam
- Expandable memory
3. Samsung Galaxy S10e – Best Budget Wi-Fi 6 Smartphone
The Galaxy S10e is a compact smartphone available for a much lesser price than the other Wi-Fi 6 smartphones.
The Samsung Galaxy S10e is still a flagship phone. However, it sports a minimalist build design than the other S10 series. It has a 5.8-inch (2280 x 1080p) screen display compared to the 6.1 inches (1792 x 828p) iPhone 11, which comes with the same price tag. The S10e features some excellent specs with an impressive camera and battery performance.
How did Samsung manage to launch a flagship smartphone for such a lower price?
For starters, the battery capacity isn’t like the S10 or S10+ at only 3100mAh. However, it can get you going through the day, and thanks to PowerShare and fast charging, you can quickly recharge the device for more uptime. The S10e also features little thicker bezels, and you can access the in-display fingerprint on the side frame. If you can live with the above limitations, the S10e is easily one of the best smartphones with cutting edge features.The S10e has a low battery life compared to the other Wi-Fi 6 phones and sport a thick build design, which might be a downside for some users.
On the other side, the S10e features dual cameras with no telephoto lenses. You can still take amazing shots with the 16MP and 12MP lenses and record 4K video up to 60fps. Overall, it is a potent smartphone with an intuitive Android Pie OS and Snapdragon 855 chip, which provides cutting edge features such as Wi-Fi 6.
- Compact build design
- Decent battery life
- Exceptional display
- Expandable storage
- Good camera performance
- USB-C port
- Fingerprint position not ergonomic
- Far-fetched fast charging tech
- Camera night mode is still a nightmare
4. Samsung Galaxy Note10+ – Best Flagship Smartphone with Wi-Fi 6
The Galaxy Note 10 plus is the best flagship phone we have seen so far, with a premium build quality, significant battery upgrades, laptop storage, and the exclusive Samsung S-Pen.
The Note series is one of the premia and loved flagship smartphones in the world. The Note10+ is a significant upgrade to the Note series bringing cutting edge features in all aspects from the screen size to battery performance and hardware. It a large device, and thanks to the curved edges and trimmed bezels, the 6.8-inch screen sits well in a light and compact chassis.
Note10+ features a Quad HD+ (3040 x 1440) dynamic Amoled display for crisp and vibrant visuals. With the large screen and crystal-clear display, using the Note10+ feels more of a tablet. However, the big screen can be a disappointment for some as it is almost impossible to control the phone with just one hand.With a crisp, large display, 12GB of RAM, and up to 1TB expandable storage, Note10+ brings laptop performance in a light and portable smartphone.
Onboard you get a powerful Snapdragon 855 processor chip and Android Pie operating system. It’s a powerful mobile device that can take on most mobile games and demanding apps with no lagging or a dip in performance. The Snapdragon 855 ships with the latest Wi-Fi 6 generation and Bluetooth 5.
For photographers and creatives, the Note10+ doesn’t disappoint. It comes with four cameras: 16MP Ultrawide, 12MP Wide (primary), 12MP Telephoto, and a 3D ToF VGA for depth vision. The front camera is a 10MP sensor that also supports 4K video recording at 60fps like the rear cameras.The 12MP ultrawide camera in the Note10+ is one of the widest, yet in a smartphone, but it doesn’t feature autofocus.
A 4300mAh non-removable battery powers the Note10+. It is a significant upgrade to Note 10’s 3500mAh. Samsung guarantees up to 20 hours of video playback, 17 hours internet on Wi-Fi, and up to 28 hours of talk time. The Note10+ is one of the few flagship smartphones that support fast charging and USB Power delivery 3.0. The phone ships with a USB-C 25W adapter; however, you can purchase the 45W for even quick charging times.
- Unique and versatile S-Pen
- Excellent battery life
- Supports fast charging with USB PD 3.0
- A compact build design with powerful hardware
- A lot of memory for files and apps
- USB-C port
- No 3.5mm audio jack
- The screen size is a lot bigger for some users
- No autofocus in the ultrawide lenses
5. iPhone 11 Pro – Best Compact Smartphone with Wi-Fi 6
With a smaller screen compared to the iPhone 11, the Pro version brings an innovative camera design, great battery life, and crisp display in a compact and powerful device.
The iPhone 11 Pro is the first iPhone to feature a triple 12-megapixel camera setup. It has the regular main cam, 2x telephoto, and an ultrawide shooter from the iPhone 11. The combination lets you take drastic shots with an optical zoom of up to 2x and 10x digital zoom. You can record vibrant 4K videos up to 60fps to take advantage of these powerful lenses.The best highlight of the iPhone Pro’s camera is the night mode feature; it has the best low-light camera, which makes it easy to take cracking shots in the dark or low-lit environments.
iPhone 11 Pro isn’t all about the camera; its compact design is the best in class allowing you to manage the phone with just one hand. It has a 5.8-inch screen with a 2436 x 1125 super retina XDR display, which provides accurate colors and realistic contrasts for the best visuals. The screen gets very bright, especially when showing Dolby Vision or HDR10 content.
Onboard the iPhone 11 Pro is a new A13 Bionic chip and iOS 13, upgradeable to iOS 13.3.1. The Bionic chip is faster than the last A12 processor and brings new features, among them Wi-Fi 6, image signal processor (ISP), and digital signal processor (DSP). One of the best features of iOS 13 is the dark mode, which significantly improves battery life.
The battery life is remarkable, with up to 18 hours of video playback and 65 hours of audio playback. It is a 3046mAh non-removable battery that supports fast and wireless (Qi) charging. The only downside is that Apple sill uses its lightning connector instead of USB-C. However, there is a USB-C to lightning cable so you can charge your iPhone 11 Pro with your Mac.
- Excellent shots and video quality
- Stellar battery life
- Compact and premium build quality
- Fast A13 processor chip
- Bright and clear XDR display
- Still no USB-C connector
- No 3.5mm audio jack