Google Wifi is a mesh-capable wireless router developed by Google. It was announced on October 4, 2016, and released in the United States on December 5, 2016. Further international rollout followed with the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Germany, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and Philippines.
Google Wifi aims to provide enhanced Wi-Fi coverage through the setup of multiple Wifi devices in a home. Wifi automatically switches between access points depending on signal strength. Wifi can be purchased as a single unit or in a multi-pack. Wifi features 802.11ac connectivity with 2.4GHz and 5GHz channels, 2x2 antennas, and support for beamforming. It has two gigabit Ethernet ports, and contains a quad-core processor with 512 MB RAM and 4 GB flash memory. Wi-Fi access can be controlled through a companion mobile app.
Google Wifi received mostly positive reviews. It was significantly praised for its design, setup process and performance, but received criticism for lacking a website interface and for lack of proper customization features for advanced users.
|Release date||December 5, 2016 (United States)|
|System-on-chip used||Qualcomm IPQ4019, quad-core ARM CPU, each up to 710 MHz|
|Dimensions||Diameter: 4.17 in (106.12 mm)|
Height: 2.70 in (68.75 mm)
|Mass||12 oz (340 g)|
Android Police reported in September 2016 that Google was preparing to introduce a mesh-capable wireless router with enhanced range, along with its October 4 date of announcement and US$129 price point. Google Wifi was officially announced on October 4, 2016, with expected availability in the United States in December. The device became available in the United States on December 5, 2016, in the United Kingdom on April 6, 2017, in Canada on April 28, 2017, in France and Germany on June 26, 2017,in Australia on July 20, 2017, in Hong Kong and Singapore on 30 August, 2017, and in Philippines on June 26th, 2018.
Google Wifi can be purchased two ways: as a single unit or a multi-pack. One Wifi device is a little white cylinder. When combining multiple devices, it will automatically switch between access points. The router itself supports 802.11ac connectivity with 2.4GHz and 5GHz channels, 2x2 antennas, with support for beamforming. Wifi has two gigabit Ethernet ports, and contains a quad-core processor with 512 MB RAM and 4 GB flash memory. A companion mobile app provides the ability to selectively control Wi-Fi access.
James Trew of Engadget praised the ease of setup for the device, writing that "Setting up a router isn't usually that hard, but it often involves an ugly web admin panel that -- ironically for a device that helps you enjoy the internet -- looks like it was designed in 2003. You'll set Google WiFi up with an app" and described the process as "all very simple and painless". Trew also liked the design, calling it "nice" and compared it to other routers by writing that "A quick internet search for "wireless router" returns a slew of angular black boxes with ugly antennas that might look okay in an office or basement, but nowhere else" and stated that "Google WiFi's white cylindrical design, however, is fairly unremarkable, and that's precisely the point". For performance, Trew was surprised to find that Google Wifi gave him a considerably higher speed than his previous router, describing it as "almost tripling the transfer rate of my old router every time". He also praised the app's ability to easily add more units around a house, the ability to manually prioritize what devices should get the highest Internet speed and the mesh network's capabilities of automatically switching between access points. However, he criticized the lack of a website interface and noted that the device might not be suitable for advanced users but rather "for people who don't enjoy navigating the typical router admin console (or don't even know that their router has one)".
Dong Ngo of CNET also praised the setup process, describing it as "self-explanatory, and dare I say, fun". Ngo also praised speed, calling it "fast" and that the coverage and reliability provided by the mesh system was "great". Similarly to Trew, Ngo criticized the lack of proper customization features, calling it "frustrating" and elaborating that "You can't do as much with the Wifi as you can with a regular router. To name a few, there's no MAC filtering, content filtering, or even support for Dynamic DNS (DDNS)". Ngo also noted that the Wifi system is connected to a user's Google account "at all times", meaning that, while security updates can be provided on a regular basis, the "constant connection to Google is required. That's a dealbreaker for some".
Dan Seifert of The Verge reiterated praise for design, writing "each unit is a compact, unobtrusive cylinder that can be tucked away on a shelf or counter and doesn’t look like a piece of computer equipment in the middle of your living room", and also for the setup, describing it as "painless and took about 10 minutes total to complete". Seifert wrote that "In each room, Google Wifi was able to provide a strong wireless signal and enough internet bandwidth for the most demanding streaming needs" and complimented the system for being able to provide his bedroom with decent speeds, despite it being "the furthest room" and the "hardest test" in his home. He noted that, while the app shows which access point a device is connected to, it "doesn’t allow you to force devices to hop from one to another". Overall, Seifert stated that "If all you care about is raw performance, [Netgear] Orbi is a better router, but for overall experience, including cost and maintenance, Google Wifi is an easier system to use".
Google OnHub is a residential wireless router product from Google, Inc. The two variants are manufactured by TP-Link and ASUS. Google's official tagline for the product is, "We’re streaming and sharing in new ways our old routers were never built to handle. Meet OnHub, a router from Google that is built for all the ways you use Wi-Fi." In 2016, Google released the Google Wifi router with mesh networking, and combined its functionality and network administration with the OnHub so that OnHub and Google Wifi may both be used interchangeably in mesh networks.
Google touts the OnHub router as "easy to use and ready for the future" for its intuitive interface. According to OnHub specifications, both OnHub models are "Weave Ready" and "Bluetooth Smart Ready". The future enablement of these network protocols are possible as OnHub routers have a IEEE 802.15.4 radio antenna and a Bluetooth antenna. However, as of early 2018, the Bluetooth and 802.15.4 functionality have not been enabled.OnHub routers have a dual-core 1.4GHz CPU, 1GB RAM, and 4GB flash storage. Like Google Wifi, the OnHub creates a single SSID for both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands to simplify the Wi-Fi experience for the end user. The OnHub will automatically steer devices to connect to the band with the best connection.IEEE 802.11s
IEEE 802.11s is Wireless LAN standard and an IEEE 802.11 amendment for mesh networking, defining how wireless devices can interconnect to create a WLAN mesh network, which may be used for relatively fixed (not mobile) topologies and wireless ad hoc networks. The IEEE 802.11s working group draws upon volunteers from university and industry to provide specifications and possible design solutions for wireless mesh networking. As a standard, the document was iterated and revised many times prior to finalization.
802.11 is a set of IEEE standards that govern wireless networking transmission methods. They are commonly used today in their 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n and 802.11ac versions to provide wireless connectivity in the home, office and some commercial establishments.List of Google products
The following is a list of products and services provided by Google.