How to check the type of WiFi standards on your computer

A Wi-Fi® enabled device, such as a wireless laptop can connect to the internet through the router's WiFi. Each WiFi-enabled device has been created to follow a set of WiFi standards developed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Below are the WiFi standards with their features.

StandardBandMaximum data rateChannel width
802.11b2.4 GHzUp to 11 Mbps20 MHz
802.11a5 GHzUp to 54 Mbps20 MHz
802.11g2.4 GHzUp to 54 Mbps20 MHz
802.11n2.4 GHzUp to 450 Mbps20 MHz
5 GHz40 MHz
802.11ac5 GHzUp to 1300 Mbps20/40/80 MHz
802.11ax2.4 GHzUp to 10 Gbps160 MHz
5 GHz
Checking the type of WiFi standard supported by your wireless adapter helps determine your computer's possible data rate or WiFi speed.

For example: Let's say you have an 802.11ac router, and the wireless adapter in your laptop is an 802.11g adapter. Your adapter has a limitation of capping out at 54 Mbps per 802.11g standard, while an 802.11ac router can reach data rates of up to 1300 Mbps. When your computer transfers data more slowly than your high-tech router, upgrading your wireless adapter to a newer wireless standard can help speed up your connection.

This article will help you check the WiFi standard of the adapter installed on your computer, so you can decide if you need to update your wireless adapter.

Below are two ways to determine the type of WiFi standards your wireless adapter supports:

Device Manager
Command Prompt

You may also contact your computer or wireless adapter manufacturer to know the WiFi standard it supports.

Device Manager

1. On your computer, click on the Windows® logo and enter "Device Manager" on the search tab. 
2. Select Device Manager on the search results.

3. On the Device Manager window, click Network adapter

4. Look for the name of your wireless adapter.
In this example, the wireless adapter is Killer(R) Wi-Fi 6 AX1650i 160MHz Wireless Network Adapter with 802.11ax WiFi standard.

Command Prompt

1. On your computer, click on the Windows logo and enter "Command Prompt" on the search tab. 

2. Select Command Prompt from the search results.

3. On the Command Prompt window, enter “netsh wlan show drivers” and then press [Enter].


4. Look for the Radio types supported section. This will indicate what WiFi standards it supports.

In this example, the wireless adapter is Intel(R) Wi-Fi 6 AX200 160MHz with 802.11ax WiFi standard. This is backward compatible with 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, and 802.11ac.



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