13 things you need to know about MU-MIMO Wi-Fi

It’s a big breakthrough in wireless connectivity, but don’t let MU-MIMO’s limitations catch you off-guard.

Become An Insider

Sign up now and get FREE access to hundreds of Insider articles, guides, reviews, interviews, blogs, and other premium content. Learn more.

It's been nearly 20 years since Wi-Fi made its debut, and one of its most significant innovations to date is now beginning to spread: MU-MIMO, an optional feature in Wave 2 of the emerging 802.11ac wireless standard.

MU-MIMO stands for multi-user multiple input and multiple output. It builds on single-user MIMO (SU-MIMO), which was introduced close to a decade ago with the 802.11n standard.

SU-MIMO increases Wi-Fi speeds by allowing a pair of wireless devices to simultaneously send or receive multiple data streams. MU-MIMO ups the ante, allowing multiple devices to simultaneously receive the multiple data streams. It is one of the most complex Wi-Fi features to date.

MU-MIMO vs. SU-MIMO Qualcomm

SU-MIMO technology allows multiple input and output streams with one device at a time, whereas MU-MIMO allows simultaneous communication with multiple devices.

As 802.11ac Wave 2 wireless routers and access points (APs) hit the market, anyone who supports a Wi-Fi network will need to get educated about MU-MIMO. Read on for 13 facts that will help get you up to speed.

To continue reading this article register now