They say that anything red is automatically faster than anything that isn’t red, but D-Link’s latest router isn’t just wearing a colour of speed, but boasting eight high-speed antennas, too. How’s that for an omen of speed?
You may not realise it, but the home network is probably more crowded than you think. Depending on the size of your family, the device in charge of dealing with your internet and wireless control may be dealing with a phone for every family member, a computer, a tablet, and then the various other things with WiFi or a hard-wired connection built in, such as a games console or two, a TV, a security system, and so on and so on.
That’s a lot to deal with, and a lot of network to spread out between devices, so your regular router may not be dealing with the load.
You’ll know this because devices aren’t quite getting internet speed or may even be refusing to connect to the network, and none of this is good, spelling out that you have networking problems.
Fortunately, the easy fix isn’t quite that hard: a new router is needed, and one that delivers all of the speed, and then some.
This week, D-Link is updating its rather unusual looking high-speed router, which we often refer to as the “Pizza Hut” router simply because it looks a little like one of the old eat-in pizzerias Australia used to have more of.
Our name might be cute, but the official name is the DIR-895L, and this router is all business, delivering a 1.4GHz dual-core processor, 802.11ac connectivity with backwards compatibility to 802.11a/b/g/n, eight antennas, and four simultaneous data streams to get more information out to devices at once.
The use of multi-user multiple-in multiple-out technology or “MU-MIMO” means WiFi should be spread evenly, and SmartBeam tech will mean compatible devices know where to look for the antennas and stay connected.
“Following on from the success of our DIR-890L AC3200 Wi-Fi Router which was the first from the Ultra Performance Series, the DIR-895L continues D-Link’s philosophy of innovation by being built with the best speed, coverage and processing power available,” said Graeme Reardon, Managing Director of D-Link in Australia and New Zealand.
“Anyone who has ever lost their Wi-Fi signal while gaming or streaming movies on Netflix can benefit immensely from the advanced features and chart topping wireless speeds and coverage this new router offers. Investing in the latest wave of Wi-Fi technology, you can be assured that the DIR-895L will future-proof your home network.”
You’ll find a few wired connections also, with Gigabit catered to those still reliant on a Cat 5e or Cat 6 connection on cable, but WiFi is the focus here, and given the eight antennas, we’re not shocked.
The connections are reliant on two 5GHz bands and one 2.4GHz band, offering three bands of delivery with roughly 5300Mbps of power, roughly translating to 5Gbps of power for devices, and that’s before the multi-user technology is tapped.
“In terms of “future-proof”, the DIR-895L is the future, by supporting MU-MIMO technology, which is the latest technology that will become prevalent over the next few years to boost speeds across the home and small business,” said Reardon.
“Not only does this technology improve speeds, but it allows more ‘cars on the highway’ by expanding the number of lanes by double what the current generation of products has.”
There is a catch, though, and that’s the DIR-895L being just a router.
No modem here, unfortunately, which is a bit of a shame since Australians tend to like hybrid modem routers more, and that’s because we’re more into convergence, especially with the majority of the population on ADSL2+.
As the National Broadband Network rolls out, however, that is changing.
“Whilst All-in-One Modem Routers still account for the majority of sales in the ANZ market place, with the NBN picking up the pace, more and more customers are looking for a router only solution, and just as importantly, many people have old cable modems that work fine but that don’t have decent wireless on-board, so this is a great way to upgrade your entire network,” said Reardon.
One thing D-Link’s DIR-895L doesn’t have is a cheap price, and that’s because it’s a very new, very high speed piece of technology, arriving with a recommended retail price of $699.95.
That makes it a fairly exy router, though a very modern one.
We’ll let you know our thoughts when it turns up, but if the network is struggling at home, you at least know roughly why, as well as what the fix might be.