Best Plume Alternatives Android Central 2020

Plume takes the guesswork out of building a home Wi-Fi network with its software and hardware combination. Many people don't want to pay the subscription fee that comes with Plume or want some more flexibility. As many of us work from home, having a reliable and secure connection is more important than ever. If you want your Wi-Fi to offer more than just a connection, these are some of the best options with extended support.

Secure browsing: Eero Pro

Staff Pick

Eero Pro, as well as the base Eero Wi-Fi systems support Eero Secure, which offers services like ad blocking, threat blocking, and filtering options for $29.99 per year. You can also upgrade to Eero Secure+ at $99 per year that adds in a password manager, a VPN subscription, as well as antivirus software. You also get the option to ignore these options completely and simply use the Eero system as a mesh network.

Expansion variety: Netgear Orbi RBK50

With Netgear's Orbi system, you can get access to Netgear Armor for $69.99 per year that includes antivirus software and browsing protection on your home network and on the go. The Orbi RBK50 offers tri-band Wi-Fi connectivity for great coverage and easy expansion with other Orbi routers. You also get a combined seven open Ethernet ports making getting your devices online as easy as possible.

Home monitoring: Linksys Tri-band

Linksys Velop Tri-Band Wi-Fi systems offer excellent coverage and speeds in a compact package as well as access to Linksys Aware. Exclusive to the tri-band version of Linksys Velop, Linksys Aware can detect and report motion in your home with no additional equipment for $24.99 per year. You get a fast and convenient mesh Wi-Fi system, whether you decide to use Linksys Aware after the 90-day trial or not.

Great value: Asus ZenWiFi CT8

Asus offers AiProtection software free for three years with many of its routers, including the robust ZenWifi CT8. This package comes with two tri-band mesh routers equipped with three Ethernet ports each. AiProtections offers parental control as well as blocking for known malicious sites as identified by Trend Micro's database. Of course, you can completely ignore this offer, but with three years included, it's a great value.

Keep it simple: Nest Wifi (2-pack)

Nest Wifi delivers reliable Wi-Fi performance while maintaining compatibility with a wide range of Nest accessories allowing for home security and automation as desired. You also get automatic updates from Google to keep your network secure. Each Nest Wifi router comes with two Ethernet ports with one used for the internet connection on the primary router allowing for easy network integration.

If we're making suggestions

Wi-Fi can be confusing with all of the different options available, so for many people, it's worth it to pay for a subscription to be sure things will work the way you expect and that you will have support if it doesn't. If you are looking for a reliable mesh option with included security features for free, Asus' ZenWiFi CT8 is an excellent option with dependable coverage and a stylish design. It also works with other Asus AIMesh enabled routers for easy expansion. Nest Wifi is another great option that, while it doesn't include specific security software, has a rich ecosystem of compatible Nest smart home accessories.

Eero offers one of the most comprehensive subscription services, with two tiers providing everything from basic security to software to protect your data like a password manager and secure VPN. With the Eero Pro you have the option of sticking with a simple Wi-Fi solution with a fast tri-band connection with a trial of Eero Secure.

You can always add the service down the line if you decide you want it, but the beautiful thing about eero's approach is that you don't have to commit to its subscription. This can be great if you are comfortable managing your own security solution, but having the option can be comforting if you think you may need to add profiles for children or less tech-savvy people down the road.

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