When comparing Netgear Orbi vs Google Wifi, the Slant community recommends Netgear Orbi for most people. In the question“What are the best wireless routers?” Netgear Orbi is ranked 6th while Google Wifi is ranked 7th. The most important reason people chose Netgear Orbi is:
This tri-band AC3000 device can deliver theoretical throughput speeds of 1,266Mbps (400Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 866Mbps on the 5GHz band). Third 5GHz band can reach maximum speeds of 1,733Mbps. In real life testing the Orbi router turns in a score of 480Mbps, and the satellite delivers 470Mbps. At a distance of 30 feet, the Orbi router scores 223Mbps, and the satellite scores 220Mbps. To maximize routers performance Orbi uses a separate 5GHz band that’s used only for communications between the router and the satellite. In comparison, other Wi-Fi extenders use the same bands to extend signal, which results in a 50% signal loss each time the signal is wirelessly extended.
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Pro Great performance
This tri-band AC3000 device can deliver theoretical throughput speeds of 1,266Mbps (400Mbps on the 2.4GHz band and 866Mbps on the 5GHz band). Third 5GHz band can reach maximum speeds of 1,733Mbps. In real life testing the Orbi router turns in a score of 480Mbps, and the satellite delivers 470Mbps. At a distance of 30 feet, the Orbi router scores 223Mbps, and the satellite scores 220Mbps.
To maximize routers performance Orbi uses a separate 5GHz band that’s used only for communications between the router and the satellite. In comparison, other Wi-Fi extenders use the same bands to extend signal, which results in a 50% signal loss each time the signal is wirelessly extended.
Pro Good covarage
The Netgear Orbi WiFi system can cover up to 6,000 square feet home. The router itself can cover 2,000 square feet and one satellite unit covers additional 2,000 square feet. It’s possible to add a second extender for a total coverage of 6,000 square feet.
The idea is that you would put the main router near your ISP's modem and then just add the extender where it’s needed the most.
Pro Simple setup
Setting up the Orbi is very easy. All you need to do is to turn on the main router, download the Orbi app, and follow few simple steps. Then you need to find a place for satellite where you can get best possible coverage. Connection between main router and satellite will be done automatically.
Pro Smart features prevent congestion and manage complex settings
Google WiFi uses built in software, called Network Assist technology, that works behind the scenes to deliver the best possible WiFi connection. When you're walking around the house, Network Assist seamlessly transitions your device to the closest WiFi point for faster connection. It also automatically connects your device to the fastest available band based on your location.
Pro Easy to setup through the Google Wifi app
The Google WiFi app makes setup very simple. Once you've downloaded the app, you'll have to scan the QR code on the bottom of the WiFi point, which creates a secure connection between the device and your phone. After that all you have to do is to enter the name and password and the app will do everything else in the background.
Pro Highly reliable in urban apartments with crowded Wi-Fi bandwidth
Pro App helps you monitor and control your home Wi-Fi
The Google Wifi app for Android and iOS allows complete monitoring and control of your network in a user friendly app. You can see which devices are connected and how much bandwidth each is using. You can prioritize devices for faster speeds when it matters most, even pause your kids' internet for dinner time.
Pro Up to 4,500 sq. ft. of coverage
Each hardware unit is called a WiFi point and you can have up to three units. One unit will cover 1,500 square feet, and three units will cover 4,500 square feet. So depending on the size of your home you can choose how many WiFi points you need and place them where they are needed the most.
Con Expensive to buy 1 individual satellite
If you find out that a pair of two is not sufficient, you will be paying a lot more for 1 extra satellite.
Con Expensive for bigger homes
Orbi Home WiFi System is available for just under $400. It includes a router and an extender which will cover 4,000 square feet. However if this isn’t enough for you and you need better coverage, you can get a third device for an extra $250, which makes it a total of $650.
Con Wireless signal extension causes loss of signal
Each time you extend the signal wirelessly, signal loss will occur, which basically means slower speeds. You can mitigate this by placing the satellite units around the first router unit, but it will also mean worse coverage.
Con Doesn't get through walls well
Despite claims, my real world tests showed Google Wifi is slow and loses its 5Ghz signal almost completely through thick/plaster walls, defeating its entire purpose.
Con Limited management app
Doesn't support even basic features like changing your local network's IP range, and you'll be hunting around the app wondering if it lacks a feature, or if you just can't find it in the app.
Con No web-based interface
The WiFi system can only be set up and controlled via the Google WiFi mobile app. A Google account and a mobile device are required for setup and management.