10 Best Mesh Wi-Fi Routers of 2024


The mobile app is straightforward, but it often takes a few seconds to load. Settings are also limited; there’s no mixed mode for WPA2 and WPA3 security like the TP-Link above, you can’t split the band, and there’s no option to prioritize traffic for specific activities or devices. It’s also an expensive system, requiring a subscription if you want parental controls and extra security (though you don’t need it). need it).

Having said all that, the Orbi AX4200 delivers fast, reliable Wi-Fi over long distances, and I didn’t face a single connectivity issue or dropout while testing it. For faster performance, you can also consider the Netgear Orbi RBK863 (7/10, WIRED review), or go all-in with the Netgear Orbi RBKE963.

Support for Wi-Fi 6E, which operates on the 6-GHz band, is becoming common, and with Wi-Fi 7 arriving, 6E routers and mesh systems like it are dropping in price. A 2-pack of this tri-band mesh system is relatively affordable. These cylindrical routers sport the vaselike Deco Family design, which blends into rooms. Setup is quick and easy, and the main router automatically recognized the second one when I turned it on. Each has three gigabit ports. (Unfortunately, there are no multi-gig or USB ports.)

Performance was consistently good in my home, with me recording the fastest speeds close to the router, but range is relatively limited. My top pick, the XT8, outperforms the XE75 in most scenarios. By default, the 6-GHz band is reserved for wireless backhaul, but you can open it up for devices. After several speed tests at close range (up to 8 feet away) with my Pixel 6 Pro connected, I generally got about 50 Mbps faster download speeds than the 5-GHz band, but it dropped off quickly with distance. 6 GHz has a much shorter range, and at just a room’s distance, signal strength was weaker than 5 GHz. If you use 6 GHz for wireless backhaul, you can’t place the router too far away or with too many obstacles or else you’ll have dead zones.

Disappointingly, HomeShield’s free tier offers only limited protection, and Security+ costs $5 per month or $36 per year for web and intrusion protection with notifications and reports, while Total Security costs $70 per year and includes antivirus, VPN service, and a password manager for the device. Advanced parental controls with time limits, downtime scheduling, rewards, app time limits, safe search, insights, and reports require a second subscription costing $3 per month or $18 per year. Quality of Service allows you to prioritize specific devices and set bandwidth allowances. There’s also a mixed-mode security option for WPA2 and WPA3. You can also split the 2.4-GHz and 5-GHz bands and create guest networks.

The Deco app and web interface are functional with limited options and feel a bit clunky to navigate. The app failed to identify several devices on my network. I was also disappointed by the lack of an option to run a speed test on the router to see what my ISP delivers. Ultimately, the inclusion of that 6-GHz band won’t make a difference for many people, but it’s an affordable way to dip your feet in the 6E waters. If you’re willing to spend a little more, the Deco XE200 ($800 for a 2-pack), which we’ve listed among the other routers we’ve tested below, is an excellent performer and one of the best Wi-Fi 6E mesh systems you can get. The MSRP is high, but keep an eye out for price drops.

If you’re an early adopter desperate to taste the joys of Wi-Fi 7 and don’t mind paying for it, the TP-Link Deco BE85 (7/10, WIRED review) is on your radar. There are very few Wi-Fi 7 devices available today. The BE85 is fully backward compatible with previous Wi-Fi versions, but only devices that support Wi-Fi 7, such as the OnePlus 11 5G, can take full advantage of this system.

TP-Link has retained the vase-like design that characterizes its Deco range, but these are the largest mesh routers yet, and each has a stylish 7 on the front so you don’t forget this is a Wi-Fi 7 system. Each router has four auto-sensing WAN/LAN Ethernet ports, two 10-Gbps ports (one is an SFP combo), two 2.5-Gbps ports, and one USB 3.0 port. Setup is quick and easy with the Deco app on your phone.


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