Asus Launches RT-AX88U Router With Wi-Fi 6 Support and 6,000Mbps Speeds
The Router To Success?
Asus regularly release new routers to encompass new Wi-Fi and networking standards and the RT-AX88U does just that with support for 802.11ax, now known as Wi-Fi 6.Announced in April 2018, the latest Wi-Fi standard sees a new naming convention which will be much more manageable for the public and which provides a boost in transfer speeds of up to 10Gbps - nearly 10x as much as the 1.3Gbps speed of the current standard, 802.11ac (now known as Wi-Fi 5). This bump in speed is achieved by utilising the 2.4GHz and 5GHz spectrum bands simultaneously rather than separately, as before.
The RT-AX88U follows an established Asus design aesthetic with four large external antennas that support AIRadar beamforming technology to help strengthen the connection to devices at longer distances. Asus claim their updated networking technology, including OFDMA and MU-MIMO, provides up to four times better network efficiency and capacity and up to 80% greater coverage than previous-generation routers.
Built with a new Broadcom chipset featuring a 64bit, 1.8GHz quad-core processor, this router is able to support a 160MHz bandwidth and 1024-QAM, which enables blazing fast Wi-Fi speeds of up to 6,000Mbps. This is achieved through a combination of 1,148Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 4,804 on the 5GHz band - leaving some slack in the system before the new Wi-Fi 6 peak of 10Gbps is reached - perhaps firmware upgrades could tap into this in future?
Powersaving features are part of the new Wi-Fi 6 standard and a protocol known as Target Wait Time (TWT) extends the time an idle devices can wait between connections to the router, which ASUS claims can result in up to seven times better battery life.
The Asus RT-AX88U also comes with eight Gigabit LAN ports for wired devices - a welcome boost over the usual four, plus two USB ports for connecting hard drives and printers and sharing them with the rest of the network. Gamers can rest assured that QoS for prioritizing gaming traffic is present and correct, as well as support for Asus AiMesh which allows the router to connect to other compatible routers to create a mesh Wi-Fi network.
Of course, Wi-Fi 6 enabled hardware will have to be readily available to take advantage of the new standard and, though expected to take off during 2019, it’s often a slow process and one that consumers only really take advantage of when they are facing an upgrade in hardware. Still, there has to be a trailblazer paving the way for everyone and Asus have claimed that title with the RT-AX88U, which is available to buy right now for around £280.
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