Netgear just announced a new flagship router, the Orbi 970, that’s absolutely brimming with features. The router supports the newest Wi-Fi 7 wireless standard and ships in a quad-band format, so it also handles other formats like Wi-Fi 6, 5 and 2.4. It boasts speeds up to 27 Gbps and includes 12 “high-performance antennas” for 360-degree coverage, with mesh satellite devices available for an even larger wireless footprint.
The Orbi 970 was quite obviously designed with modern consumers in mind, so it should excel when streaming 4K or even 8K video, engaging with high-output VR and AR applications, UHD video conferencing, online gaming and everything else people get up to online these days. The system’s also smart-home friendly with the capacity to connect up to 200 devices.
The ultrawide bandwidth router is fully compatible with older wireless standards and it’s a quad-band device, so everything should work at once without too much fiddling. The Orbi 970 automatically chooses the correct wireless platform for each device and speeds are increased via a dedicated backhaul feature that Netgear says “doubles” the speed in which the router and any satellites communicate.
The Wi-Fi 7 integration is the big news here, however, as this allows smartphones and laptops to whiz along at speeds up to 5Gbps. This isn’t Netgear’s first Wi-Fi 7 router, that honor goes to the but the wireless standard has significantly increased in popularity throughout the past year.
The port options here seem on point, as the router itself features a single 10 gig Internet port, one 10 gig Ethernet port and four 2.5 gig Ethernet ports. Additionally, each satellite boasts one 10 gig Ethernet port and two 2.5 gig Ethernet ports. The system also looks pretty nifty, with a cylindrical design and a slim profile.
However, with great wireless power comes great financial responsibility. Like many this thing’s expensive. The base model that includes the router and a single satellite costs $1,700. A three-pack that includes two satellites, offering coverage of 10,000 square feet, costs $2,300 and each additional satellite sets you back $900. The Orbi 970 series is available in white via Netgear or third-party retailers, but the limited-edition black series is only available from the manufacturer. You do get a free year of the company’s proprietary antivirus product, Netgear Armor, with a purchase.