The standard for Wi-Fi routers has been "ac" for years and shows the latest protocol and compatibility with new mobile devices. Now a new standard has appeared, "802.11ax" or "Wi-Fi 6", which means that a whole range of new routers are available. Wi-Fi 6 is a new standard, so only laptops and smartphones that have been commercially available since late 2019 can access these faster speeds. Yes, Wi-Fi 6E was recently announced, but frequencies have been assigned and mobile devices that support it have been shown. So now is the time to start thinking about a serious router upgrade.
In other words, if you want your network to be properly future-proof, Wi-Fi 6 is still the best choice right now. Wi-Fi 6 promises new speeds, fewer problems and better security – and you need a new router to access it.
In our test reports on dozens of the latest routers, we kept an eye on new models that are Wi-Fi 6 compatible. Now we are ready to make some recommendations:is a great place to start with everything you'd expect from a state-of-the-art router. But also have a look at our other tips.
Netgear Nighthawk AX8
Netgear has released a slew of Wi-Fi 6-enabled Nighthawks, but the AX8 is a great middle ground for those who want the best but don't need an office router. This model promises a speed of up to 6 Gbps in all bands – yes, Wi-Fi 6 is really a big improvement – and was developed for large households with a whole range of devices in the wireless network.
Inside, the 1.8 GHz processor takes care of the details, manages up to eight OFDMA connections simultaneously and 16 Wi-Fi clients simultaneously, while ensuring that there are no dead zones. There are also six Gigabit Ethernet ports for file transfer, including the ability to combine two of the ports to make cable connection even faster.
There are many Nighthawk AX models that are Wi-Fi 6 capable if you want to choose something with a little less power and less cost, but this model is best for a home router if you really want the best!
Asus has a number of Wi-Fi 6 routers, and frankly we are impressed with everyone. This special model has a lot in common with the Nighthawk AX8 and offers a speed of 6 GBit / s (about 1.15 Mbit / s in the 2.4 GHz band and 4.8 Mbit / s in the 5 GHz band that expected speeds for all Wi-Fi 6 models) and 8 LAN ports. The dual-band router also works with AiMesh, the Asus Wi-Fi mesh system that can connect multiple routers together to provide better and stronger coverage when needed.
The router supports both OFDMA and MU-MIMO for direct connections to devices for more stability and better data streaming. Players will appreciate the adaptive QoS, which prioritizes games to ensure that there are no slowdowns at the worst time. As with most modern Asus routers, the network is protected by AiProtection Pro, a security filter that protects your data.
TP-Link Archer AX6000
With Netgear and Asus, who offer first-class ax models, you know that TP-Link cannot lag far behind. This Archer model offers up to 6 Gbit / s in all bands, nine gigabit LAN ports and compatibility with OFDMA and MU-MIMO. It comes with a 1.8 GHz quad-core processor and two co-processors to manage the connection quality. It may all feel a little familiar now. However, TP-Link offers some unique functions.
The software "Band Steering" and "Airtime Fairness" ensures that the tapes are not overcrowded and that a device does not receive too much attention. This router also has a USB-C 3.0 port, which is useful for everything from data transfer to charging your mobile devices – a nice advantage if your router is on your desktop. There is even Alexa compatibility if you want to issue voice commands.
Asus ROG Rapture GT-AX11000
Are you mainly interested in games? The Rapture is a Wi-Fi 6 model for gamers who may not be able to connect to a cable but still want the highest available WiFi connection. The router prioritizes gaming devices, game servers and so-called game data packets and speeds up the connection from start to finish, supported by the 1.8 GHz quad-core processor.
If you find an arrangement that allows a wired connection, there is a dedicated 2.5G connector for gaming devices. With AiMesh you can connect multiple Asus devices, while AirProtection offers a nice security filter. There are also numerous options for customizing connection monitoring and prioritization so that you can check the quality of your connections at any time. Oh, and it does port forward extra, with the ability to choose your game and device and activate Open NAT in seconds.
D-Link AX6000 DIR-X6060
D-Link is working hard to prepare one of the most advanced Wi-Fi 6 models for release. The DIR-X6060 is packed with features that provide speeds of up to 6,000 Mbps over two bands, charge the speed with the latest QAM technology, and switch to clearer frequencies with DFS when needed. OFDMA and MU-MIMO technology enables eight simultaneous direct connections to devices (if you have the compatibility). This router also included a “target wake-up time” to extend your phone's battery life while ensuring a reliable connection to your Wi-Fi network when you need it. There is even compatibility with Google Assistant and Alexa.
Yes, the DIR-X6060 is equipped with the latest technology – but there is a catch: D-Link has not yet set a release date. Suffice it to say that the router is coming soon. If you're a D-Link fan or like features that help even the most demanding mobile users, it's probably worth waiting for.
TP-Link Deco X60 WiFi 6 AX3000 full network mesh Wi-Fi system
The TP-Link Deco was already a great mesh system that spreads several units around your building to ensure excellent coverage and no dead zones. However, in 2020, Deco added Wi-Fi 6 technology and is now better than ever. The devices can cover up to 7,000 square feet (which makes them suitable for almost any large room) and offer speeds of up to 3 Gbit / s for up to 150 devices. Expected upgrades such as OFDMA and MU-MIMO are also available. Note, however, that the Deco X60, in addition to the TP-Links suite of security tools, also supports WPA3 encryption, which will soon become the new required standard. If you want a network system for the new decade, you should choose this.