Networking specialist Netgear announced the release of the latest edition of its family of wireless Internet routers, the R6250 Smart WiFi Router, which is available for $169.99 and is the company’s newest router to support the upcoming 802.11ac wireless standard.
The router includes Gigabit Ethernet ports and a USB 3.0 port and is suitable for HD streaming to multiple devices, including the latest smartphones with 802.11ac, such as the recently released Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One. The dual-core 800 MHz engine enables combined WiFi connections at Gigabit speeds up to 1600M bps and provides enough wireless coverage for large homes.
The upcoming 802.11ac wireless standard is the world’s fastest WiFi, providing Gigabit WiFi speeds so users can download Web content faster and synchronize large video or music files more quickly. The increased speed of 802.11ac technology is ideal for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets by providing three times the performance for a similar amount of battery consumption of devices using the current 802.11n WiFi standard.
As a result, many companies, such as Samsung and HTC, are now releasing smartphones with 802.11ac WiFi, with additional 802.11ac-enabled smartphones, tablets and TVs from other manufacturers anticipated to debut in the coming year. Netgear developed the router with those developments in mind, with the R6250 designed to work as network hubs for consumers with eight or more WiFi devices, and it works well with dual-band WiFi devices such as the Apple iPad and iPhone 5.
The router also comes with an array of features provided by Netgear, including Genie, a free app for PCs, Macs, iOS and Android smartphones and tablets that enables home users to control, monitor, repair and manage their home networks through a simple dashboard. Netgear customers can download the utility through Netgear’s Website or from the Google Play or App Store.
In addition, the router comes with wireless security turned on out-of-the-box, complete with a pre-configured network name and password, and is Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) ready and can stream to any DLNA-compatible device in the user’s house, including smart TVs, Blu-ray players, media players, game consoles, handheld devices, tablets and other devices. Another feature is EZ Mobile Connect, a way to enable a guest’s smartphone or tablet to connect to the home WiFi network by scanning the QR code from the genie WiFi screen without typing in security keys or SSIDs.
All devices in the next-generation 802.11ac product line, including the R6250, are backward compatible with 802.11a/b/g/n to provide interoperability with legacy WiFi devices and for maintaining performance on wireless-N networks. The R6250 is the latest Netgear product to offer 802.11ac capability, joining the R6300 WiFi Router, the industry’s first 802.11ac router, which supports approximate combined WiFi speeds up to 1750M bps, and the A6200 WiFi Adapter, a 802.11ac dual band WiFi USB adapter that enables consumers to upgrade their existing PC or laptop to 802.11ac performance.
"At Netgear, we recognize that your home network today has become increasingly complex and must support multiple diverse Internet-enabled devices–smartphones, tablets, computers, game consoles and more—with an ever-expanding library of digital content," Sandeep Harpalani, Netgear’s director of product marketing for core networking, said in a statement. "The R6250, our newest addition to the 802.11ac WiFi router lineup, will help your network achieve the high performance you expect to support your increasingly digital lifestyle and premium WiFi devices—now, and for years to come."