South Korea makes 6GHz band available for Wi-Fi

The unlicensed 6GHz band will offer download speed of up to 2.1Gbps, the Ministry of Science and ICT said.

South Korea's Ministry of Science and ICT said on Thursday that it has approved 1.2GHz of spectrum in the 6GHz band -- the 5,925MHz to 7,125MHz range -- for unlicensed use.

With the ministry's approval, South Korea will become the second country to make the 6GHz band available for unlicensed use after the United States gave the go-ahead in April. 

The decision will make the whole 6GHz band at under 25mW available for free use at indoor settings across the country. 

For device-to-device connections like tethering, spectrum sitting in the 5,925MHz-6,455MHz range will also be available for use everywhere, regardless of whether it is indoors or outdoors. According to the ministry, the decision to allow device-to-device connections in the 6GHz band is a world-first.  

It will also provide more channels for Wi-Fi as well as improve data transfer speed levels to that of 5G networks, the ministry said.

In the ministry's own testing, it demonstrated that 6GHz Wi-Fi could reach speeds of 2.1Gbps, which is five times faster than the currently available Wi-Fi speed of around 400 to 600Mbps.

With the spectrum being freed up, the ministry said connection quality in places like cafes, schools, and public transport zones would be improved. 

South Korea first made the announcement to make 6GHz band available for Wi-Fi in June. 

When the country made that announcement, it also said it would reallocate 3.7GHz to 4GHz spectrum currently used for satellite communications into 5G wireless communications.

Related Coverage