Most of us know that Wi-Fi stands for wireless internet, but do you know what each letter in Wi-Fi stands for? Wi-Fi or WiFi is a technology that uses radio waves to provide wireless high-speed network connections, typically in towns and cities. The term Wi-Fi first came into use commercially in 1999 and it has now become the global standard for wireless connectivity.
The term "Wi-Fi" is now associated with "Internet" for many people. However, it's simply a wireless connection standard. Wi-Fi provide you with internet connection if you're using a wireless device, but it isn't the internet.
Wi-Fi is essentially a very advanced digital radio using frequencies between 2 gigahertz and 5 gigahertz in the electromagnetic spectrum, which is around the same area as microwave ovens.
How does Wi-Fi work?
Wi-Fi uses radio waves to transmit data from your wireless router to your Wi-Fi-enabled devices like your TV, smartphone, tablet, and computer. Because they communicate with each other over airwaves, your devices and personal information can become vulnerable to hackers, cyber-attacks, and other threats. This is especially true when you connect to a public Wi-Fi network at places like a coffee shop or airport. When possible, it’s best to connect to a password-protected wireless network or a personal hotspot.
W - Wireless
The "W" in wi-fi stands for wireless, meaning it transmits data without the use of wires or cabling. Wired connections are faster than Wi-Fi, but they are also more expensive to install and are less flexible. Because Wi-Fi is a wireless technology, it allows users to create their network by connecting multiple devices while sharing information between them.
I - Internetworking
Wi-Fi enables two or more devices to communicate with each other wirelessly on an internetwork which can be either larger public or private networks that share resources across interconnected routers. This was not possible before wi-fi became widely available. The word internetworking describes this capability of interconnecting locally situated networks with one another through gateways, similar to how roads are interconnected to allow travel between cities.
F - Frequency-division multiple access (FDMA)
A type of digital wireless transmission that allows devices on a single radio frequency to transmit simultaneously by using different time slots. FDMA is the method used for sending communications throughout most of the world's cellular networks. When you use wi-fi, you are likely connected wirelessly on FDMA technology. It’s an efficient way for your router to manage the flow of data coming in and out of your house or office building.
I - Interference
Wi-Fi signals use radio waves to transmit data, but in a crowded environment, they can interfere with each other. This interference limits the strength of wi-fi connections and reduces speeds when you’re trying to access the internet. Fortunately, advances in technology have minimized this problem. In most cases, you won't notice any interference at all when using your Wi-Fi network. However, if there are obstructions between your router and device or if there is too much interference from nearby networks, you may experience slower connection speeds or even see that dreaded "low signal" icon on your phone or laptop.