The M1 MacBook Pro supports a maximum PHY data rate of 1200 Mbps when connected via 802.11ax@5 GHz. Compare that to a maximum 1300 Mbps with the 2017-2019 Intel MacBook Pros when connected via 802.11ac@5 GHz.
The difference gets even more significant when both are on 802.11ac. The older MacBook Pros will reach 1300 Mbps while the new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros top out at 866 Mbps. That's 33% slower.
It's likely the speed gap is due to the M1 MacBook Pro's support for a maximum of two spatial streams versus the Intel model's support for three.
Let us know if you've noticed a real world speed difference in the comments!
Read More [via 9to5Mac] [via @BulzomiAnton]