When Samuel is not writing about networking or 5G at Mobile Nations, he spends most of his time researching computer components and obsessing over what CPU goes into the ultimate Windows 98 computer. It's the Pentium 3.
The TP-Link Deco X68 is a fast router with AX3600 speed and a tri-band connection. The third Wi-Fi band allows the X68 to keep speeds higher than the Deco X20 since it doesn't need to share the 5GHz band between devices and the mesh link.
Mint Mobile has some of the cheapest data around, but Google Fi offers more data and family plans. If you've got the right phone, Google Fi even has better coverage, especially when you leave the country.
When you switch to Metro by T-Mobile, you can get a free 5G phone as well as an unlimited plan with 5G support for $25 per month for two years. Metro points out this is half the price of competitors Boost Mobile and Cricket Wireless for comparable plan.
T-Mobile has updated its coverage maps to show customers where they can access the faster Ultra Capacity 5G network on mid-band 2.5GHz spectrum. This network covers 165 million people and offers average download speeds of 350Mbps.
TP-Link's Deco X20 is one of the cheapest Wi-Fi 6 mesh systems you can get with an AX1800 connection and 5,800-square feet of coverage. However, it still falls short of the Meshforce M7's potential tri-band AX2100 speeds with even greater 6,000-square feet of coverage. With software and expansion, the best one for your home comes down to your specific needs.
Wi-Fi 6E takes Wi-Fi 6 technology to the next level with the open spectrum available at 6GHz. With this extra spectrum, these routers can keep speeds high even if you have a lot of neighbors or 5GHZ congestion.
The TP-Link Archer AX21 is faster than the Archer AX10 though for most people, the difference speed may go unnoticed. Still when it comes to a home network with a lot of device, especially smart home devices, the extra 2.4GHz speed on the AX21 could go a long way.
You don't always need unlimited data and a network of physical stores driving up your phone plan costs. Instead, these plans get you connected as cheaply as possible, no matter what your phone needs are.
If you want to build a mesh network at home without Google, there is a ton of competition. Whether you want better speeds, prices, or a different experience, there are plenty of options to get connected.
The Speedefy K7W AC2100 Wi-FI 5 router comes with fast speeds thanks to 1733Mbps on the 5GHz band and support for 4x4 MU-MIMO. If you need something that can handle streaming from multiple devices at once, this is a solid pick.
Ookla's network performance report from the second quarter of 2021 finds that T-Mobile has the fastest overall network and fastest 5G performance. Ookla gathers data from users of the popular Speedtest app allowing it to gather information from all over the country on a wide range of devices.
According to the 1H 2021 report from RootMetrics, Verizon still has the best overall network. This report compares the three main carriers in 125 markets across all 50 states. Verizon won in five of the seven categories falling short to AT&T in data performance and network speed.
Wi-Fi 6 mesh routers take speed to the next level with improved connectivity between the mesh nodes. So whether you need gigabit speeds or just want consistent coverage, there are plenty of options available.
Some routers unify all bands under a single Wi-Fi name and rely on software to steer your device to the proper band. Sometimes, the software gets this wrong and can put your PS5 on a slower connection, but Sony lets you fix the problem.
If you're looking to add support for Wi-Fi 6 to your network without spending a lot on speed and features you don't need; there are more options than ever. For example, TP-Link has the cheapest overall Wi-Fi 6 router and doesn't give up much speed to get there.
VoLTE — or Voice over LTE — is the new standard for calling throughout the U.S., Canada, and parts of Europe. Not only does it facilitate much higher call quality between cell phones, but it allows devices to stay connected to LTE while on a call, improving data speeds for everyone.