Power plugs have WiFi beat with next-gen PowerLine tech

One of our favourite technologies is getting a bit of an upgrade, and if you’re not a huge fan of wireless for a computer that doesn’t move — say something that stays on the desk — the next generation of PowerLine is here.

It won’t be for everyone, but if you still have a desktop, an all-in-one, or a laptop that doesn’t go very far, and all of these still have a wired Ethernet port, an upgraded bit of technology may well boost speeds around your home, provided you have the power plugs to spare.

This week, D-Link in Australia and New Zealand is showing off an update to the PowerLine technology it has been selling for a while, boosting the performance of the technology and making it possible to use the power framework in your home as if it was a network.


For those who haven’t heard of the technology before, it’s essentially a two part solution that puts a power plug with network access at two points in a home, taking advantage of the power plugs in a home and transferring network activity over the electrical wiring hidden behind walls instead of long thick network cables passed in front of them, or even wireless activity happening around you at the time.

PowerLine technology isn’t a thoroughly new technology, and you’ve been able to find this technology for a few years, with PowerLine adaptors able to send data packets from machine to machine by piggy backing onto the electrical grid in a home.

D-Link’s additions don’t change how this works, as far as we can tell, but do bring in faster speeds, with the 2015 additions not just adding Gigabit speeds of at least 1Gbps (translated to a little over 100MB per second), but also capable of using the Multiple Input Multiple Output “MIMO” technology to expand on the network coverage typically offered.

“Our latest PowerLine solutions underscore the growing needs of connected homes,” said Graeme Reardon, Managing Director for D-Link in Australia and New Zealand.

“Whether gaming online, streaming HD media or extending your home network, the new PowerLine Starter Kits transform any room’s existing electrical wiring to seamlessly connect everything together, providing the highest quality streaming and fastest throughput speeds available. They are the perfect complement to an existing home network.”


Two models are available in the 2015 D-Link PowerLine updates, arriving in the DHP-601AV and the DHP-701AV.

As you can imagine, the higher the number, the better the product, and that’s basically what’s going on here, with the 601AV providing two 600AV PowerLine AV2 1000 Gigabit adaptors capable off speeds up to 1Gbps with a plug-and-play installation, while the 701AB packs in two DHP-700AV PowerLine AV2 2000 Gigabit adaptors, which D-Link says not only boasts speeds up to 2Gbps but also brings in that MIMO tech for better network coverage across the home.

We’re checking with D-Link to find out how the 2Gbps speeds can be reached given most wired networking ports offer at most 1Gbps, but it could mean one D-Link 2Gbps PowerLine adaptor has the ability to send out a few connections to more than one PowerLine adaptor, potentially accounting for 2Gbps speeds across the board not to just one computer.

In theory, this could mean a PowerLine adaptor could use the wall to connect to a router, while extras could be connected to a TV and to other devices like a computer, providing Gigabit speeds to each.

We’ll wait for D-Link to confirm this with us, but for now, if you’re keen to take advantage of your home’s electrical grid for a networking setup, you’ll find the DHP-601AV (below) in stores shortly for a recommended retail price of $149.95, while the DHP-701AV fetches an RRP of $199.95.