linksys velop best wi-fi routers for smart homes

Best Wi-Fi Routers for Smart Homes

linksys velop best wi-fi routers for smart homes

In the smart home, the reliability of your wireless network is crucial. Smart home devices can use up a lot of bandwidth (especially video doorbells and smart security cameras), and the best Wi-Fi routers for smart homes use mesh networking technology to ensure solid coverage everywhere in the home.

Mesh networking uses a set of access points, called “nodes,” to deliver Wi-Fi within the home. When placed correctly, nodes offer a far more stable (and faster) connection, which we’ve found results in dramatically better network performance.

While you could run your smart home off of a single high-performance router, in most situations, you’ll still have “dead spots.” These dead spots can cause all kinds of issues for smart home devices, leading to unnecessary frustration and a poor user experience. It’s why we only recommend mesh networking solutions: they are indeed the best Wi-FI routers for smart home use.

Best Wi-Fi routers for smart homes

Prices current as of December 4, 2021. Top Smart Home Deals may receive a commission as a result of purchases using the above links.

As we have already said, the best Wi-Fi routers for smart homes use mesh networking technology. Therefore, we’ve limited our recommendations to mesh networking systems only. While we are big fans of Linksys’ Velop system (it’s what we use here at home), their high-end Wi-Fi 6 capable Velop AX4200 is quite expensive. But so is Google Nest Wifi: which many consider one of the best mesh networking platforms.

However, in most tests we’ve seen, Google Nest Wi-Fi, a Wi-Fi 5 router, bested the Velop AX4200 three-node system with only two nodes. That makes it the far better deal, plus the fact it seems to manage connections than most mesh networking systems better, resulting in a more stable connection no matter where you’re at in your home. Plus, if you use Google Assistant in the home, each node has built-in Google Assistant support to boot.

However, the Google Nest Wifi doesn’t make much sense for those not within the Google ecosystem, whether by other Nest devices or Android phones. For the rest of us, we’d recommend opting for the eero Pro 6. While the standard eero 6 disappoints, the Pro version offers a much better experience, easily handling traffic thanks to its tri-band radio and impressive range capabilities.

We understand if you’re taken aback by the prices of some of these routers, as they’re quite expensive. However, you’ll want to invest in a solid wireless networking setup if you plan to use more than just one or two smart home devices. The investment is worth it in the end.

Choosing the best Wi-Fi routers for smart homes

Unless you live in a small home (such as a one or two-bedroom apartment), you will need a mesh networking system for smart home use. Two and three-bedroom homes and apartments may need two nodes, while larger three-bedroom homes and four-bedroom homes should consider three nodes.

However, a quick word of caution: just as you can lose performance having your nodes too far apart, having them too close together can also cause issues. Be sure to follow the instructions included with your router to help you place your nodes at ideal spots.

The above recommendations for the best Wi-Fi routers for smart homes all score highly in the range department. We’ve found their coverage claims to be valid, so you’re safe in basing your purchase on their recommendations.

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