Safaricom is replacing the routers in its customer’s homes with the new Dual band Wi-Fi router that support 5 Gigahertz (GHz) frequency band. The upgrade is free of charge and they will send you a text weeks before they show up at your residence.
The previous router used the 2.4GHz frequency band to transmit its wireless signal. The new Router uses two frequencies, 5GHz and 2.4 GHz and that’s why it is referred to as a Dual Band Wi-Fi Router. Here is a short video of the new router.
Devices that support 5GHz will show two Wi-Fi signals with the same name but one will be labeled as 5G. They have exactly the same password but this can be changed in the router settings.
5GHZ Wi-Fi Advantages
The biggest advantage of 5GHz band is that is offers a faster connection. The second advantage is that it is less vulnerable to interference because this band is not overcrowded.
2.4GHz Wi-Fi supports up to 450 Megabits per second (Mbps) or 600 Mbps, depending on the class of the router. 5GHz Wi-Fi will support up to 1300 Mbps.
Most new devices like laptops, smartphones, tablets and streaming devices support the 5GHz range. The Amazon firestick recommends using the 5GHz band for the best Wi-Fi performance.
5GHZ Wi-Fi Disadvantages
The biggest disadvantage of 5GHz is that it doesn’t travel far and cannot penetrate solid walls. This means that the user will have a hard time getting a Wi-Fi signals in the other rooms.
That is why a dual band Wi-Fi router offers the best of both Wi-Fi bands. The 5GHz is faster but the 2.4GHz can travel far as well as penetrate walls. Mobile devices like smartphones and tablets will automatically switch to 2.4GHz is 5GHz becomes weak.
5GHz Vs. 5G
The 5GHz frequency band should not be confused with 5G mobile network. 5G is the 5th generation mobile network. To use 5G network you need a SIM card inserted into a 5G supported smartphone. 5G is transmitted through mobile phone transmitters that are usually outside or fixed on top of buildings. 5G is a new global wireless standard after 1G, 2G, 3G, and 4G networks.
Remember, to use 5GHz Wi-Fi you have to connect through a Wi-Fi Router and to use 5G, you need a SIM inserted into a 5G supported smartphone. Basically you do not need a SIM card in order to utilize the 5GHz Wi-Fi Band.
Read more about frequently asked questions about 5G from Safaricom.