Palms-On With Google’s OnHub Router

In a perfect world, you’d never have to think about your router. It would just sit somewhere in a corner and make sure that your favorite YouTube videos find their way to your laptop.

However in actuality, you usually must reset your router when your connections begin dropping and woe to you in the event you ever have to really change any settings. Regardless of their ubiquity, most routers nonetheless have dismal consumer interfaces. Enter Google. With the $200 OnHub router, Google needs to repair all the pieces that’s mistaken with fashionable routers — and for probably the most half, it does.

After just a few days with the router in my house, I’ve to confess that I don’t wish to return to my outdated setup of utilizing my outdated Verizon-supplied Actiontec router. OnHub’s Wi-Fi protection and consumer expertise is solely superior to some other router I’ve tried.


So what makes OnHub particular? Google partnered with TP-Hyperlink to principally construct a reference mannequin for what it believes a contemporary router needs to be and put it into a reasonably cylindrical package deal that’s meant to obviously present that it’s not simply one other boring Netgear field. It’s powered by what’s basically a small laptop and it’s utilizing all of that brainpower (and extra antennas than your typical router) to make sure that your knowledge flows on no matter channels work finest for you.

As a result of OnHub focuses a lot on discovering the finest Wi-Fi connection for you, it’ll seemingly provide you with a much better connection than your customary router, particularly in the event you reside in an space the place there are many energetic Wi-Fi networks.

If all you need is a working Wi-Fi community at house, OnHub offers you that and many extra.


My Macbook Air at the moment picks up about 25 networks and as that quantity has gone up, so have my networking points — particularly at night time when everyone is on their tablets, laptops and Apple TVs. That meant Netflix movies would usually buffer or come to an entire halt, for instance.

As soon as I switched to OnHub, the general community throughput went up, movies began sooner and I haven’t seen a buffering concern since. Your mileage might differ, in fact, however for me a minimum of, the OnHub has labored wonders for the Wi-Fi connectivity in my place.


OnHub isn’t simply in regards to the , although. To arrange the router and handle it, you put in an app in your cellphone (Android or iOS), and after the cellphone and router have shaken palms (over audio, no much less), you choose your community’s title and password and also you’re able to go.

The OnHub options an LED ring that’s considerably harking back to the failed Nexus Q mission to offer you a visible cue about its standing. That’s a static gentle, although. There aren’t any blinking lights on the OnHub.

Utilizing the cell app, you may share your Wi-Fi password with others, give precedence community entry to some units (possibly your Xbox when you find yourself beginning a gaming session, for instance), observe your bandwidth utilization, and handle all the opposite fundamental router options.


In comparison with a normal router, these choices are considerably restricted, however that’s precisely the purpose of OnHub. You continue to get entry to fundamental DNS and WAN settings, in addition to port forwarding and Common Plug-and-Play settings, however that’s about it.

No one loves managing a house Wi-Fi community, however OnHub makes it about as simple as might be. You lose a little bit of flexibility within the course of, however the overwhelming majority of customers couldn’t care much less. If all you need is a working Wi-Fi community at house, OnHub offers you that and many extra.

In case you’re having Wi-Fi points at house, then OnHub is value a strive.

You do hand over a bit greater than only a few configuration choices with OnHub, although. The router solely includes a single Ethernet port. For probably the most half, this can be a utterly Wi-Fi centric system. In case you solely have a single desktop, that’s no huge deal (although chances are high you desktop doesn’t stand in your lounge). However when you have a few non-Wi-Fi units at house, chances are high the OnHub isn’t for you. Google is working with different companions to construct comparable routers, so possibly the subsequent one can have extra bodily ports.

OnHub is unapologetically in regards to the future. In that respect, it’s not that completely different from Google’s earliest Chromebooks, for instance. It’s about wi-fi connections — not bodily ones. And possibly it’s a little bit of a Computer virus, too, as a result of there are many hints that OnHub is greater than a Wi-Fi router.


OnHub will quickly assist Weave, for instance, Google’s new Web of Issues protocol. As soon as that’s activated, the OnHub router will turn into a bit greater than “just” an awesome router — it’ll turn into the central hub for Google’s good house initiative. That may solely work if a router can cowl a full home, so Google not solely improved the router’s community attain, nevertheless it additionally made it enticing sufficient to sit down on a shelf in your lounge (that’s simply probably not the place your community cables sometimes attain, however that’s a special query).

What precisely that “Google On” future will seem like stays to be seen. It’s not even clear what “Google On” actually stands for. Right this moment, the query is whether or not it’s value shopping for this $200 router — as a result of for now, that’s all of the OnHub is.

In case you’re having Wi-Fi points at house as a result of the airwaves are too congested or your present router doesn’t fairly have the attain to cowl all your house, then OnHub is value a strive. In case you don’t and you’ve got a steady connection already, then there’s no actual motive to change and also you’re in all probability higher off ready. I, for one, am not going again to my outdated router.

Aline Niyonkuru


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