Brutal Battle Looms Wi Fi 6 & 5G Routers To Take Centre Stage
A brutal battle is breaking out in the networking market with Netgear, D Link and Linksys banking on Wi-Fi 6 and 5G technology to drive sales.
While 5G routers are set to be 2021 products, the big battle is around W6 routers and the Connected Home market where consumers are jumping into new SmartHouse products but not necessarily upgrading their home network products to handle the addition of new network devices, which deliver better security and above all faster and smoother throughput of a Wi Fi signal.
Wi-Fi 6 isn’t just a simple speed boost and if you are buying a new PC or smartphone or the latest connected home product there’s a good chance it’ll be inside your next new devices.
Wi-Fi 6 is the next generation of Wi-Fi.
It’ll still do the same basic thing — connect you to the internet — just with a bunch of additional technologies to make that happen more efficiently, speeding up connections in the process.
It will deliver speeds up to 9.6 Gbps, that’s up from 3.5 Gbps on Wi-Fi 5.
The typical download speed in Australia is around 50 Mbps on an NBN network up to 100Mbps depending on what package you are on.
The fact that Wi-Fi 6 has a much higher theoretical speed limit than its predecessor is still important.
That 9.6 Gbps doesn’t have to go to a single computer.
It can be split up across a whole network of devices. That means more potential speed for each device.
The same will apply for 5G when it starts to get critical mass which won’t happen until at least 2022.
This new technology opens the door for Linksys to get back into the mainstream game and for Netgear to recover from a rocky 2019.
Netgear were forced to take brutal haircut in 2019, the stock fell 52.9% last year so the roll out of new Wi Fi 6 products is critical to the Company.
The company dropped its 84.2% ownership of Arlo Technologies to zero just before entering a long-awaited period of product upgrades, rolling out Wi-Fi 6 routers and related gear before any of its major competitors.
At CES 2020, D-Link announced a set of routers and access points with D-Link Wi-Fi Mesh.
Even though the Wi-Fi Alliance has not officially released the EasyMesh standard yet, D-Link promises that the new products with D-Link Wi-Fi Mesh will work seamlessly with other products that adopt the EasyMesh standard.
The new products also include some cost-effective Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) solutions, though the major ones are all based on the Wi-Fi 6 standard.
A comparison of the features of the new products is provided below.
Linksys has also announced an entire line-up of 5G networking gear, but I doubt whether retailers are going to be interested in 5G routers in Australia until we have a larger installed base of 5G devices. Currently Telstra is claiming that in six months they have only managed to sell 100,000 5G smartphones.
What is interesting are the Linksys 2 in one device such as the Linksys Velop 5G Mesh Gateway, a two-in-one modem and router solution that marries 5G and Wi-Fi 6. You can use this to bring a 5G signal into your home and extend it to every room via the mesh system. It’s also compatible with existing Linksys Velop systems, so you should be able to slot it into an existing Linksys mesh setup.
Linksys is also announcing a 5G Mobile Hotspot with Wi-Fi 6 support for on-the-go connectivity, a 5G modem for use within the home, and a mmWave 5G outdoor router that can be wired into a 10 Gbps home internet connection.