Something to look forward to: This week, Netgear introduced what it’s boasting is the industry’s first quad-band WiFi 6E mesh router. The new model, the latest entry in its Orbi series of WiFi systems for large homes, promises increased speeds and support for more frequencies. It’s available to pre-order now and should ship in time for the holidays, but will set you back quite a bit.
The newly announced RBKE960 series adds support for the 6GHz WiFi frequency on top of the existing 5GHz and 2.4GHz frequencies, in order to provide faster internet, more simultaneous connections, and less latency. Across all three frequencies, it should be able to handle 16 simultaneous WiFi streams.
According to Netgear’s product page for the new model, combined Wi-Fi speeds could reach as high as 10.8Gbps. Because of the upgraded radio and antennas, devices running 5GHz and 2.4GHz WiFi could also see speed increases of up to 30 percent. The three-pack of one router and two satellites should offer these speeds at a range of up to 9,000 square feet. The RBKE960 series also features a 10Gbps ethernet WAN port, a 2.5-Gigabit ethernet port, and three 1-Gigabit ethernet ports.
The press release doesn’t give an exact date for when the new model will ship, but the product page claims orders should ship by October 29. Pre-orders are open now in the United States and will open soon in the United Kingdom. At $1,500, however, it’s quite expensive.
The WiFi 6 standard, also known as 802.11ax, was introduced last year in order to increase wireless internet performance as well as the frequency range across which devices could operate. Earlier this year, TechSpot rated Netgear’s Orbi system as the best mesh WiFi system. WiFi 6E is an extension to WiFi 6 that supports 6GHz connections.