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Wi-Fi 6 & AX Routers

written by Winston (Device Deal) • Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax)

Learn more about Wi-Fi 6 and explore our top-selling router models.

netgear wifi 6 router
netgear wifi 6 router

Wi-Fi 6 is up to 2.5x faster than the previous generation.

Browse internet without buffering with these next-generation routers.

Featured Wi-Fi 6 Router

What is Wi-Fi 6?

Wi-Fi 6 is the newest generation of Wi-Fi technologies, and an evolution from the 802.11ac (or Wi-Fi 5) standard. It was finalised in late 2019 and, since then, has gradually received adoption in consumer and enterprise devices.

Compared to its predecessor, Wi-Fi 6 adds many welcome features, including:

  • Faster internet speeds (up to 2.5x faster than Wi-Fi 5);
  • Reduced network congestion;
  • Increased client capacity; and,
  • Reduced battery consumption

You might have also heard about Wi-Fi 6E. While similar, Wi-Fi 6E is best viewed as a separate standard from ordinary Wi-Fi 6. We have more information about Wi-Fi 6E and the 6Ghz wavelength up on our blog, if you're interested.

Router Advertising Explained

You may have seen Wi-Fi 6 routers advertised with the letters 'AX' followed by a string of numbers. An example of this is an AX5400 router. Many people won't know what this means, so let's quickly break down what these terms mean:

  • AX refers to the official name of the Wi-Fi 6 standard, which is termed 802.11ax. 
  • 3200 (or other numbers): these numbers reflect the maximum bandwidth of the router, in Mbps.

So, for example, a router which is advertised as AX1800 will mean it should support speeds of up to 1800Mbps, as well as the Wi-Fi 6 standard.

The same can be said for previous generations of Wi-Fi, which followed a similar naming convention. In those cases, the AX portion will just be changed to reflect the latest standard of Wi-Fi that the router supports (most likely AC, as this was the generation prior to AX, or Wi-Fi 6).

It should be noted, however, that these maximum speeds are inclusive of combined bandwidth from the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands. Since your device can only transmit data on one band, and since these speeds are only theoretical (i.e. tested under ideal laboratory conditions), you won't actually achieve these maximum speeds in reality.

asus wifi 6 router
asus wifi 6 gaming router

Router Features to Consider

There are some routers which include a variety of extra features intended for specific use cases. These include gaming routers, Mesh-enabled routers, and routers with many IO ports (such as Ethernet LAN, USB or more).

Let's go over some of the different types of Wi-Fi 6 routers you may want to consider.

Gaming Routers

If you are a hardcore gamer or streamer, you might want to consider a router that is specifically tailored for low latency, high bandwidth gaming.

Not only are these routers typically faster and more lucrative than their ordinary counterparts -  they also include features that are designed to make gaming as seamless as possible. These features can include:

  • QoS optimisation: Prioritise gaming traffic over other types of network traffic
  • Custom OS: Easily manage and tweak your router settings
  • Faster Bandwidth: Fast dual or tri-band network speeds
  • Gigabit Ethernet: Ensures stable connections

You can shop our range of gaming routers by clicking here.

netgear nighthawk xr1000 gaming router netgear
netgear nighthawk xr1000 gaming router netgear

Netgear Nighthawk XR1000 (YouTube Review | Shop Now)

tp-link deco m5 mesh wifi system
tp-link deco m5 mesh wifi system

TP-Link Deco M5 (YouTube Review | Speed Test)

Mesh Routers

For those living in mid-to-large size homes, a single router often isn't enough to provide full Wi-Fi coverage throughout the home. In these cases, you'll experience dropouts in areas of your home, such as your backyard, garage, or indoors.

Thankfully, Mesh Wi-Fi provides a solution. These routers:

  • Provide much better whole home Wi-Fi coverage than single-unit routers, even through walls and long distances;
  • Work seamlessly across your devices, and;
  • Can include extra features such as antivirus or firewall protection.

You can shop our range of Mesh Wi-Fi by clicking here.

5G and LTE Routers

Some people prefer using mobile broadband for their internet. In some cases, a 5G broadband plan is actually faster and cheaper than a comparable NBN plan. Plus, some 5G and 4G routers can be used portably.

These routers have certain benefits, including:

  • Minimising downtime: switch seamlessly to mobile data when Wi-Fi is down (great for ensuring mission-critical uptime)
  • Use portably: portable routers like the Nighthawk M5 operate on battery and can be used anywhere
  • Fast speeds: the combination of Wi-Fi 6 and leading technologies such as 5G ensure fast speeds no matter where you are

You can shop our range of 5G and 4G Routers by clicking here.

netgear nighthawk m5 5g modem router
netgear nighthawk m5 5g modem router

Nighthawk M5 5G Mobile Router (Shop Now)

Why Wi-Fi 6?

Much Faster

Wi-Fi 6 achieves speeds of up to 9.6Gbps.

Greater Capacity

Provides up to 4x increased capacity.

Longer Battery

Allows your devices to use less power on Wi-Fi.

Is it worth paying more for Wi-Fi 6?

Generally speaking, Wi-Fi 6 routers tend to be more expensive, and cost more, than older Wi-Fi 5 routers. Whether Wi-Fi 6 is worth the extra cost depends on your individual circumstances.

If your existing router works fine, and you're not experiencing slow speeds or Wi-Fi dropouts, then perhaps you might not need to upgrade.

On the other hand, if you regularly stream 4K movies, or have a lot of devices connected on Wi-Fi, you will appreciate the far higher bandwidth and client-capacity that Wi-Fi 6 offers.

It should also be said that Wi-Fi 5 is an older technology, having been introduced in 2013. On the other hand, Wi-Fi 6 is much more recent, debuting in 2019. It doesn't make much sense, if you're looking to upgrade your router, to choose the older Wi-Fi 5 standard. Wi-Fi 6 will be much more future-proof, and is better able to handle both today and tomorrow's internet requirements.

Still undecided? You're most welcome to contact our team for tailored advice.

Netgear Nighthawk LAX20 Review: 4G LTE + Wi-Fi 6 Router

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