WiFi Facts
WiFi Facts

28 Interesting Wi-Fi Facts

James Israelsen
By James Israelsen, Associate Writer
Published May 29, 2020
  • In addition to Wi-Fi, technologies that use radio frequencies to send signals between devices include walkie-talkies, car radios, cell phones, and weather radios, each operating on their own range of frequency.[3]
  • Before the advent of Wi-Fi, the spectrum of radio frequencies used by Wi-Fi were referred to by some as “the garbage bands”—for being largely useless.[7]
  • AM radio uses frequencies in the range of thousands of waves per second; FM operates in the range of millions; and Wi-Fi sends and receives data using frequencies in which billions of waves travel per second.[3]
  • The NCR Corporation was one of the original companies responsible for the development of wireless connections through Wi-Fi when, in 1988, they developed a standard for connecting wireless cash registers.[7]
  • Although it is often thought that Wi-Fi stands for “wireless fidelity,” in reality, branding consultants picked the name "wi-fi" in hopes that the comparison to “hi-fi” would make consumers think of how CD players operate in conjunction with amplifiers.[7]
  • Part of what made Wi-Fi possible was the 1985 decision by the Federal Communications Commission to open several bands of radio frequencies for use without the need of a government license, thus prompting individuals and organizations to explore a use for these free bands.[7]
  • Because Wi-Fi uses radio waves that are around the same frequency as those used in a microwave, people with older microwaves can experience Wi-Fi interference while using their appliance.[3]
  • Hedy Lamarr, a 1940s Hollywood actress once named the most beautiful woman in the world, was the first person to patent the idea of “frequency hopping,” a technology used in some forms of Wi-Fi.[4]
  • Hedy Lamarr Wifi
    Silver screen sensation—and tech pioneer

  • The first company to promote Wi-Fi was Apple Computers, who included a Wi-Fi airport option on their 1999 iBooks.[7]
  • A committee of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers approved a standard for Wi-Fi technology in 1997.[7]
  • Wi-Fi uses “spread-spectrum technologies” like frequency hopping or frequency bands to allow signals to avoid interruptions.[7]
  • The initial setup necessary to establish Wi-Fi connections is generally more expensive than wired technologies; however, over the long run, Wi-Fi usually ends up being cheaper because of the longer life cycle of the hardware.[2]
  • Although it has come into popular use as the name for a general type of technology, the term “Wi-Fi” is actually a trademarked brand name owned by the Wi-Fi Alliance.[8]
  • WiFi Hacker
    It doesn't take long for someone who knows what they're doing
  • Hackers can attack a user’s data on an open Wi-Fi network in less than 2 seconds.[1]
  • Though it is often written as "wifi" or "WiFi," the correct rendering is "Wi-Fi."[8]
  • By the end of 2013, more mobile devices had been produced than there were people living on Earth.[1]
  • At least 38% of two-year-olds can use mobile devices.[1]
  • Multiple football stadiums across the United States have reported that during a single game, over 30,000 Wi-Fi connections are used within the stadium.[1]
  • Around 94% of consumers say that Wi-Fi is the most important amenity they consider when making a choice about which hotel to stay in.[1]
  • Most airlines provide Wi-Fi connections, but usually for a fee.[6]
  • Countries where Wi-Fi access is still drastically limited include Greenland, Bhutan, Central African Republic, Cuba, Somalia, and the Solomon Islands.[6]
  • Wi-Fi Utility
    It swiftly becomes a necessity
  • According to one study, 75% of people predicted that a week without access to Wi-Fi would leave them grumpier than if they went a week without coffee.[1]
  • Wi-Fi is available in taxis in some countries, including the United Kingdom.[6]
  • In the tiny town of Green Bank, Virginia, WiFi, Bluetooth, and mobile connections are all outlawed, due to the presence of a high-tech government telescope nearby.[6]
  • Although a standard Wi-Fi network can send signals through a distance of around 300 feet, buildings and other materials generally reduce that range to between 30 to 100.[5]
  • Higher-frequency Wi-Fi, such as 5G, has a shorter effective range than does the more traditional 2.4Ghz frequency.[5]
  • In addition to computers, televisions, and phones, other products that are being made with Wi-Fi connectivity include refrigerators, printers, clocks, digital radios, and cars.[5]
  • Many students without access to Wi-Fi go to McDonald's and link into the restaurant's free Wi-Fi in order to study.[9]

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