Q&A with Rob Wells, senior director at NETGEAR
Back in November 2012 we ran a Q&A with Rob Wells, senior director at NETGEAR, to discuss the developments in Wireless AC technology and what it meant to consumers. Here, we revisit the matter with Rob and see how this technology has advanced over the past six months…
Why is a connected home so important for consumers in 2013?
The last year in particular has seen a dramatic rise in Wi-Fi hungry gadgets. With iPhones, iPads and tablets topping many wish lists, fast and reliable internet connection has never been more important. With technology moving forward at an alarming rate, consumers want their entire home to have a fast and reliable internet connection. As we find ourselves streaming movies from our bedrooms and playing the latest Xbox game in the loft, a connected home has now become a necessity for all of us.
Most of the time, things work smoothly and we can communicate, socialise, bank and shop online with no problems. But with more gadgets dependent on a single router than ever before, things don’t always run smoothly. What we normally take for granted, like a fast and reliable internet connection, can become difficult and often frustrating.
What are the latest NETGEAR products that are helping us all to build the ultimate connected home?
In April 2012, NETGEAR launched the NETGEAR R6300 â€“ one of the first 802.11ac dual band gigabit Wi-Fi routers. This was a significant development for the connected home as it delivered the world’s fastest Wi-Fi to consumers. NETGEAR has also recently announced support for Beamforming+ on models within its AC range, which means that these routers can go even faster and further.
Why are the benefits of AC technology now more accessible to customers?
What’s really exciting is that many technology companies are now announcing products that are also compatible with AC technology, and we’ll only continue to see a huge demand for this standard over the coming months.
For example, Samsung has released the Samsung Galaxy S4, and HTC recently made the HTC One available, both of which are 802.11ac-enabled smartphones. We’re also anticipating smartphones, tablets and TVs from other leading manufacturers to be announced over the coming months. This means that consumers can really start to make the most out of this technology, and we’re looking forward to helping them.
Could you tell us a bit more about Beamforming?
Beamforming is a smart signalâ€“focusing technology that allows the router to transmit radio signal in the direction of the device, thus creating a stronger, faster and more reliable wireless communication. Beamforming+ refers to NETGEAR’s implementation of the Beamforming standard with a fine-tuned Wi-Fi design for improved Wi-Fi range and performance.
And how does this work exactly?
The technology recognises the location of a wireless device on your network and directs the Wi-Fi signal directly at it, constantly checking and tracking moving devices such as your mobile phones and tablets. This targeted approach amplifies the Wi-Fi signal by adjusting the phase of the transmitted signal, delivering stable Wi-Fi connections for voice and video. The result is a highly tuned Wi-Fi network that optimises overall wireless performance and delivers the experiences you want, such as fast downloads, clearer voice calls, uninterrupted HD video and lag-free gaming.
What are the key benefits of Beamforming+ technology?
It has three key benefits:
- Extends Wi-Fi coverage and reduces interference and dead spots
- Deliver stable Wi-Fi connection for voice and HD video
- Better Wi-Fi throughput
Which NETGEAR products will it be compatible with?
Beamforming+ is currently compatible with the NETGEAR R6300 (802.11ac dual band gigabit Wi-Fi router) and the NETGEAR A6200 (802.11ac dual band Wi-Fi USB adapter). The technology is also available through a free firmware upgrade for current NETGEAR customers of the R6300 Wi-Fi router and the A6200 Wi-Fi USB adapter, and can be downloaded by clicking on the following link: http://support.netgear.com/product/r6300.
Thanks to Rob for his time and answering our questions.