Netgear today announced what it claims is the industry's first AC3200 tri-band Wi-Fi router, the Nighthawk X6. That claim is born from the fact that this is the only consumer tri-band router that's available to purchase today (in pre-order form, with shipping expected in July) -- Asus has its RT-AC3200 on tap as well, though it doesn't look like it will beat Netgear's newest unit into homes.
This is the fastest rated consumer Wi-Fi router yet
Router makers aren't messing around these days. Taking full advantage of the 802.11ac spec, which incidentally is no longer in draft form, Asus today announced the RT-AC3200 wireless router. Asus is billing the RT-AC3200 as the world's fastest Wi-Fi router, and as far as we're privy to, that's an accurate claim. Of course, like all other high-speed routers, Asus is taking liberties with nomenclature to describe the speed.
The National Security Agency’s (NSA) surreptitious surveillance activities are staggeringly alarming in their scope and size. The more you learn about them, the more you’re filled with implacable repugnance. All the agency does, it seems, is try and figure out new ways to stalk people with its perennially askance gaze. But in case you are not done being disgusted and alarmed by the many NSA excesses exposed by Edward Snowden, journalist Glenn Greenwald, who broke the NSA surveillance story in 2013, has published a 272-page book that contains a number of “never-before-seen documents entrusted to him by Snowden himself.”
You can now install third-party DD-WRT firmware on certain Trendent AC routers
We don't know if a war is brewing between Trendnet and Linksys, but like the latter's WRT1900AC router, Trendnet today announced open source DD-WRT firmware compatibility for its high performance TEW-818DRU (v1.0), TEW-821DRU (v2.0)l, and TEW-811DRU (v1.0) Wireless-AC routers. This is pretty big news for networking gurus who like to tinker but are other otherwise bound by their router's stock firmware.
New Wi-Fi routers from D-Link come in four different color options
Some of D-Link's newer Wi-Fi routers already sport a distinct aesthetic with a cylindrical design that's somewhat reminiscent of Apple's Mac Pro (but smaller). Someone decided D-Link's routers still needed more flair, so the company released a new and colorful line of AC750 routers. D-Link's new DIR-818LW model is available in red, teal, black, and white, each of which features the familiar cylinder design and AC750 Wi-Fi connectivity.
Another high performance router option in the 802.11ac space
If you've been putting off upgrading your home network, now is a good time to finally upgrade your hardware, starting with your router. Wireless-AC is here (still in Draft form, but we've run into very few quirks with the routers we've tested to date) and it can make a world of difference in your home network, even if you own a Wireless-N router. You have a growing number of options to choose from, including Trendnet's new TEW-818DRU dual-band router, which is the company's new flagship consumer model.
It took Asus eight months to address a security flaw in some of its routers
If you own an Asus-brand router, do yourself a favor and check to see if there's a firmware update available. Depending on which model you own, you could be susceptible to an eight-month security flaw that could potentially allow a remote hacker to access your hard drives. A recent firmware release is supposed to plug up the security hole, it's just a shame it took Asus so long to address the issue. So, what happened?
The transition to Wireless-AC networks is happening at a pretty brisk pace. We just recently wrapped up a roundup of several 802.11ac routers (you'll find it in the upcoming March issue of Maximum PC), and as CES kicks into full swing, even more AC routers are being announced. Buffalo just added three to the growing pile of options, including the AirStation Extreme AC 1900 Gigabit Dual Band Wireless Router WXR-1900DHP, AirStation 1200 Dual Band Wireless Router WHR-1166D, and the AirStation AC433 Wireless Travel Router WMR-433.
Belkin has big plans for its Linksys acquisition, and it includes positioning the brand as an enthusiast name. More than just lip service, Linksys announced at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas that it's bringing back one of the best selling routers of all time, the WRT54G, and giving it a makeover for the modern day Internet. Now known as the WRT1900AC, this dual-band wireless router wields a dual-core 1.2GHz ARM-based processor inside its familiar blue and black stackable chassis.
If you haven't already, this will likely be the year you upgrade your home network to the 802.11ac spec. The market is quickly becoming littered with 802.11ac router options, including a new flagship model from Asus, the RT-AC87U. Asus jointly announced its new flagship part with Quantenna Communications, whose QSR1000 4x4 Multi-User Multiple Input Multiple Output (MU-MIMO) powers what both companies claim is the world's fastest 802.11ac home router.