With WiFi-6 rollout in full swing, industry leaders like Netgear are launching new hardware at CES to cover several use cases.
As you may have seen from our previous reporting, we think that mesh networking and WiFi 6 are the two most important things that happened around WiFi in the past ten years.
Mesh WiFi was launched first, and it allows multiple routers to act as a “mesh” in your home, providing continuous coverage and seamless hand-over from router to router. It works very much like cellphone networks but in your home.
Formerly known as WiFi-AX, WiFi-6 is the finalized standard for this iteration of WIFI, and brings the wireless networks in-line with today’s needs where everyone in the home wants to stream 4K content, play games with low latency and perhaps have a bunch of connected sensors and home appliances.
In the past, we have been impressed by the Mesh feature of Netgear Orbi, and the performance of their Nighthawk series of routers. Using the strength of its Nighthawk brand, Netgear now offers Nighthawk Mesh WiFi.
Designed to be affordable (for a mesh router), Nighthawk is easy to install, thanks to its app or browser-based installation, but users can also tune a lot of options to fit exactly their usage model.
On its own, the router will try to do the right thing, and prioritize low-latency apps such as gaming and streaming. But if there’s a specific app that users want to prioritize, it’s possible too.
The aggregated speed of this router can reach 1.8Gbps, and in some instances, it can even outperform wired GbE networks.
To maximize the efficiency of the latest WiFi-6 devices, it’s possible to create one network for older WiFi clients, and another reserved newer WiFi-6 ones.
The two-node (router+1) version costs $229.99, while the three-node version will be priced later.