Routers are something that many of us probably buy once and use it until it breaks. As long as we’re connected to the internet, there’s really no need to upgrade it unless you’re looking for wider coverage.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t think of upgrading. If you have been using the same router that you have been using since 4-5 years ago or even older, then it might actually be worth considering getting a new one, even though your old one might be working perfectly fine.
This is because WiFi 6 routers are becoming more popular and with our modern day laptops, tablets, and smartphones supporting WiFi 6, it might be time to upgrade our routers so that our devices can fully take advantage of it, and here’s why.
WiFi 6 is the step up from the previous-gen WiFi 5. It offers faster theoretical speeds from 3.5Gbps from WiFi 5 up to 9.6Gbps on WiFi 6. Of course, whether or not you will hit those speeds depends on your provider, but at the very least it gives users more head room.
WiFi 6 is also better at communicating with more devices compared to WiFi 5, so with our homes being populated with smart devices like smart cameras, smart displays, smart speakers, and so on, that’s where WiFi 6 can come in handy. So without further ado, here are some of the best WiFi 6 routers worthy of your consideration.
The Asus RT-AX86U might be billed as a router designed for gaming, but we don’t see why it cannot be used for other things as well. In fact, some of its “gaming” features could actually help boost your connection in other ways.
For example, there’s a mobile game mode that helps reduce latency on your mobile devices and this can be easily enabled or disabled via the router’s accompanying app. The router itself will help users hit speeds of up to 5,700Mbps.
The router even comes with a dedicated gaming port which basically means that any device plugged into that port gets priority access, so if you’re working from home and want more bandwidth, simply plug your computer into that port and you’re all set, no extra setup or configurations required.
If you’re serious about your gaming and WiFi coverage, then the TP-Link AX6600 WiFi 6 router could be worth checking out. It features a whopping 8 antennas that can be detached, meaning that it should be powerful enough to reach all corners of your home.
It comes with 1 × 2.5 Gbps WAN/LAN port + 1 × 1 Gbps WAN/LAN port + 3 × Gigabit LAN ports and 2 x USB. TP-Link has also built-in a game accelerator that can apparently detect when you’re streaming games and help to optimize the connection for the best results.
It also comes with a free lifetime subscription to TP-Link’s HomeCare network protection to help keep your devices secure while it is connected to the router.
The problem with some routers is that they can be pretty expensive. If you’re looking to upgrade your router to a WiFi 6 router but don’t want to spend too much, then the TP-Link Archer AX21 could be great value for money, coming in at only $80 which is actually a pretty good bargain.
Despite it being somewhat of a budget router, the Archer AX21 comes with features like OFDMA, which for those unfamiliar is a way for routers to handle multiple devices within a single channel, making it smarter at allocating its frequencies and helping to reduce overall latency.
If you have the cash to splash and want something truly next-gen, the NETGEAR Nighthawk could be it. Featuring support for the latest WiFi 6E, this router promises users speeds of up to a blazing fast 10.8Gbps. The company claims that the router is capable of covering an area of 3,500 sq ft and up to 60 devices at once.
This means that if you live in a large home or if you have a lot of connected devices like TVs, speakers, security cameras, thermostats, and so on, then the Nighthawk should be more than capable of covering all of it. The accompanying smartphone app also gives users more control over their network, allowing them to see who’s connected and to manage these connections remotely.
If having a router that’s relatively small and discreet is important to you, then the Linksys Atlas Max 6E could be it. Unlike some of the other routers covered in this list, the Linksys Altas Max 6E looks very understated in terms of design. This helps you blend it into your home’s surroundings without it sticking out like a sore thumb.
This doesn’t mean that it’s only about its looks though. The Atlas Max 6E offers users a WiFi 6E connection and even though there are no external antennas, it can cover up to 3,000 sq ft and support more than 65 devices at once, with speeds of up to 8.4Gbps. It also has an added advantage of being part of a mesh system meaning that you can link it up with additional units to provide better coverage throughout your home.