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Netgear’s Nighthawk AX series of routers are helping to reduce the price of Wi-Fi 6

Connectivity has steadily increased in today’s households, with smartphones, televisions, PCs and many more devices relying on Wi-Fi. With the introduction of four new Nighthawk AX series routers, Netgear is attempting to make ultra-fast Wi-Fi 6 solutions more accessible than ever.

Wi-Fi 6 promises to deliver performance up to four times faster than current routers that employ Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac), boosting connectivity to multiple devices and more evenly spreading bandwidth based on the need of each device. This is thanks to Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiple-Access (OFDMA), a technology designed to reduce interference that causes lag and buffering.

Support for Wi-Fi 6 started to increase at the beginning of the year with new smartphones and laptops; however Netgear believes that the technology will be adopted quicker than previous generations. In order to cater to modern devices and meet 2020 projections, Netgear has unveiled its new line-up of routers, with the AX4 providing the most friendly Wi-Fi 6 price point to date.

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The Nighthawk AX4 4-Stream AX3000 is set to arrive at the end of the month, sporting Wi-Fi 6 speeds up to 3Gbps and an optimised dual-core processor specifically built with 4K streaming and online gaming in mind. At £179.99, it is set to be the cheapest Wi-Fi 6 router available until competition can catch up and is ideal for “medium size homes.”

Netgear’s Nighthawk AX8 8-Stream AX6000 is twice the speed of its budget-based-brethren with up to 6Gbps and eight Wi-Fi special streams split evenly between the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. The firm adds that “multi-Gig Internet enables customers to get more than one Gbps of Internet through aggregation,” should providers be able to keep up. This model is already on the market, priced at £299.99.

Like the AX8, the Nighthawk AX12 12-Stream AX6000 offers an “award-winning design recognized by both Red Dot and iF Design awards” and up to 6Gbps speeds. The enhanced 64bit 2.2GHz Quad-core processor accounts for a lot of the extra cost, placing the router at £359.99 at the end of April.

Stepping into enthusiast territory is the Nighthawk Tri-band AX12 12-Stream Wi-Fi 6 Router. This is Netgear’s fastest offering with staggering speeds up to 10.8Gbps and a “2.5Gbps Multi-Gig Ethernet that can be used for LAN or internet connectivity.” The company explains that this model is explicitly designed to cater to households with a need for an “abundance of bandwidth” that needs to be distributed accordingly “without congestion or drop outs. Pricing for the Tri-band AX12 will be revealed closer to its May debut.

KitGuru Says: It’s easy to see why Netgear is one of the market leaders, leveraging new technologies at a competitive price point. While many of us might not have an overwhelming need for Wi-Fi 6 just yet, it’s likely that this will change in the next few years and Netgear is keeping one step ahead.

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