Netgear’s latest Orbi is a mesh Wi-Fi 6e network that claims to deliver some impressive-sounding speeds. This Wi-Fi 6e mesh router comes with a quad-band design and a new 6GHz band – all you need is a home or office broadband plan that can deliver speeds to take advantage of Orbi’s features.
It promises double the speeds found on the traditional 5GHz band found on most routers and whole-home mesh systems today. This means that the Orbi can reach a theoretical speed of 10.8Gbps.
The router will allow devices to connect on the 2.4GHz, 5GHz and 6GHz bands, and there is a dedicated band to allow the router and satellites to communicate with each other. Each band has 4 x 4 MIMO support. The biggest downside with this tech-loaded design is that, compared to competing systems, Netgear’s Orbi is larger and more intrusive. Netgear said the router comes with 12 high-performance internal antennas and high-power amplifiers.
To truly take advantage of the quad-band Orbi, you’ll need a multi-gigabit Internet package at home. For most homes, however, purchasing this mesh system is more about future-proofing than maximizing speed. There are also a very limited number of devices that use Wi-Fi 6e connections – Samsung’s Galaxy S21 Ultra smartphone is an example.
The new 6GHz band is better suited to handling congested and congested environments, so if your home is packed with devices trying to access and connect at the same time, you won’t notice a drop in performance. This latest quad-band Orbi is actually designed for connected homes, though it doesn’t boast a connected home protocol like Thread, Z-Wave or ZigBee. Instead, it’s designed for a large number of Wi-Fi-connected home devices.
The device comes with up to seven 160MHz channels, one 10G Ethernet port, one 2.5G Ethernet port, and three 1G Ethernet ports. Built-in Ethernet ports bring a lot of versatility to gamers and streamers, especially if the router and modem are located in a separate room from the television, console, or PC gaming rig.
Like other mesh systems, the router’s controls and settings can be accessed through Netgear’s Orbi app, which is available for iOS and Android devices. You can create up to four unique Wi-Fi networks, the company said. That way, you can keep things safe.
For a complete mesh experience, Netgear is selling various bundles consisting of main routers and satellite units that can blanket up to a 9,000-square-foot space. For maximum coverage, you need the $1,499 pack that comes with a router and two satellites. Each satellite costs $599 if you need more coverage.
Pre-orders start today and the quad-band Orbi will ship in time for the holiday season. If you don’t want to spend that much money on a mesh network, be sure to check out some of the best options from our selection of top-rated Wi-Fi 6 routers and mesh systems. In terms of Wi-Fi 6e support, this Orbi’s closest competitor is Linksys’ Atlas Max 6E, which comes in a three-pack for $1,199.