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Why are so many more dual band (802.11n 2.4GHz & 802.11ac 5 GHz) APs than single-band, 5GHz-only ones? Is this for backwards compatibility?

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  • Because that's what people want to buy. so that's what they sell.
    – Ron Trunk
    Commented Sep 12, 2019 at 17:09

2 Answers 2

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Why are so many more dual band (802.11n 2.4GHz & 802.11ac 5 GHz) APs than single-band, 5GHz-only ones? Is this for backwards compatibility?

2.4GHz support is required by the standard. Until the 802.11ac ammendment, 5GHz support was optional.

So to follow the standard, either a device needed to be single band 2.4GHz, or dual band. Anything on the market that only supports 5GHz (i.e. does not have the capability to support 2.4GHz in the hardware) is not IEEE standard compliant.

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Legacy is the only reason I can think of. 2.4GHz was standard before the 5Ghz channel came to the scene. There are many APs that work on 2.4GHz only.

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