Netgear revealed to us in a press release that it’s putting out a high-end smart router starting today. Officially dubbed the Nighthawk X8 AC5300, Netgear’s latest smart Wi-Fi router supports speeds up to 5.3Gbps over a wireless signal, allegedly making it the fastest on the market.
It’s a quad-stream, tri-band router and, according to Netgear, it’s designed for home use with families in mind. Since it uses 802.11ac Wave 2 networking specifications, the Nighthawk X8 is clearly focused on large households who are constantly using the Internet on multiple devices simultaneously. And, the whole thing is powered by a 1.4GHz dual-core processor, the industry’s first active antennas, used to improve quality of range, and three quad-stream Wi-Fi bands. It bears an impressive 1024 QAM and is capable of transmitting multi-user MIMO — or multiple input/multiple output — connections. Interestingly enough, the X8 even bolsters six gigabit Ethernet ports, two of which can be combines for even faster network speeds.
Netgear even included a statistic in its press release, explaining that the average household has more than twelve Wi-Fi devices connected to its network. This information comes from market research company MarketLab, but also goes on to say that it’s only a matter of years before the IoT smart home comes to fruition, speculating that most of our household utilities will soon be Wi-Fi-enabled. That’s the demographic Netgear is preemptively targeting with the Nighthawk X8, and it certainly seems to be worthy of your consideration at some point down the road.
“Nighthawk X8 is the next wave in Wi-Fi and is for people who crave the absolute best networking experience possible today,” writes Netgear senior director Sandeep Harpalani. “Tri-band Wi-Fi helps provide sufficient bandwidth for the increasing number of devices in the home and cutting-edge Wave 2 AC provides the best Wi-Fi performance.”
Confidently, he believes that the X8’s Active Antennas, Gigabit ports, and port aggregation “outpaces any other router in the market today.” But, while that very well may be true, consumers worried about price might want to look away from the next bit of information. That’s because Netgear’s Nighthawk X8, at $400, is a lot of things, but affordable is not one of them.
Nonetheless, if you’re in the market for the absolute best in the market with no concern for price, this may very well be your best bet. Additional features of the Nighthawk X8 include application/device-aware Dynamic QoS tech, Beamforming+ to improve coverage and reliability, access to files and media over cloud, VPN support, and two onboard USB 3.0 ports. If you’re in the United States, you can purchase the router now, either at the store or online.