Synology had a great 2021; it extended its lead as the manufacturer of the best home NAS servers, and while it hasn't released as many new models as it usually does, its existing portfolio continues to sell remarkably well.
The biggest change came not in the form of hardware, but software: the brand's long-running DSM interface got an update to DSM 7.0 with a fresh design and exciting new features. With 2022 around the corner, Synology is showing off what's on the horizon at its Synology 2022 and Beyond launch event.
Synology highlighted a lot of products, and in this post I'm going to focus on four areas: networking, DSM updates, Surveillance Station, and the brand's cloud networking products. So let's take a look at what Synology has in store for the coming months, and why you should be excited.
Synology RT6600ax is a Wi-Fi 6 router with 2.5GbE connectivity
Synology released its first router — the RT1900ac — back in 2016, and followed it up with the RT2600ac later in the year. Nearly five years later, Synology is introducing a new model in the series: the RT6600ax.
The router packs quite the feature-set; it is Synology's first Wi-Fi 6 router, and it is a tri-band solution that is one of the first to work over the 5.9GHz frequency. It also has 160MHz channel width, 2.5GbE uplink connectivity for multi-gigabit bandwidth, four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, and six high-gain antennae. The design aesthetic is in line with the rest of the routers in Synology's portfolio, and the RT6600ax is slated for an official debut in Q1 2022.
To coincide with the launch of the RT6600ax, Synology is introducing SRM 1.3, the latest version of its router management software. SRM 1.3 comes with new network management features, including full VLAN support that allows you to delineate your IoT devices from all the other connected products on your home network.
The DS router mobile client is also getting an overhaul with a modern design and easy access to various router features, like parental controls, traffic limitations, web filters, and more. Overall, the RT6600ax and the updates to SRM 1.3 sound very interesting, and I cannot wait to get my hands on the router. We'll know more about how much it costs and when it will be available in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for that information.
DSM 7.1 is coming in Q1 2022
DSM 7.0 was the biggest update to Synology's software in four years, and the brand is giving us an early look at what's coming in DSM 7.1. The update will introduce SMB multichannel and DFS support, updates to Active Insight that include the ability to monitor Hyper Backup tasks, better bandwidth control options in Active Backup for Business, Virtual DSM deployment in MailPlus, and the ability to take full full DSM backups.
The changes in DSM 7.1 are aimed at office use cases, and the update will be available for testing starting sometime in Q1 2022. For home NAS users, Synology Photos is getting a few new additions, including a new geolocation feature that pulls the location info from an image's metadata, setting permissions at a folder-level, and better album organization. Synology Drive is also getting updates for mobile, giving you easier access to your data on the go.
Surveillance Station 9.0 adds a host of new features
Surveillance Station is getting a big overhaul with version 9.0, including a new user interface that's easier to navigate. There's now a Monitor Center that gives you easy access to all your feeds and alerts, and a new configuration wizard makes it straightforward to set up cameras thanks to the ability to re-use settings.
The Central Management System (CMS) is also picking up new features, such as HTTPS/SRTP support as well as per-device updates. With Synology turning its focus to cloud services, it is debuting a Synology C2 Surveillance service that lets you directly record surveillance footage to the C2 cloud. The feature comes in handy if you need multi-level security and want one instance of the footage always accessible from the cloud.
Along with the changes, Synology is introducing the DVA1622 network video recorder that's aimed at businesses. The NVR leverages AI for facial recognition and can recorgnize license plates as well, and it works in conjunction with Surveillance Station 9.0.
C2 Suite is now available for everyone
Synology introduced new services in its C2 cloud suite a few months ago, and the brand is using its annual event to formally launch all of the new offerings. C2 Backup is a cloud backup solution that comes with bare-metal restore services, and it now works with macOS machines as well as Windows.
C2 Password is an interesting addition, because it is a password manager that's free to use but comes with a feature-set that rivals paid options. There is a paid family tier that costs just $4.99 a year, but for individual users, Synology has stated that the service will be free to use regardless of the number of items stored.
C2 Identity is aimed at businesses looking for a centrally managed solution for single sign-on (SSO) and locally-deployed LDAP instances. In a similar vein, C2 Transfer allows businesses to securely transfer files up to 20GB in size.
Synology isn't introducing new NAS hardware at this event, but there will be more to share on that front in the coming weeks. With a Wi-Fi 6 router slated to launch soon and updates to the C2 suite, DSM, and Surveillance Station, there is a lot to look forward to from Synology in Q1 2022.
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Harish Jonnalagadda is a Senior Editor overseeing Asia at Android Central. He leads the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, contributing to reviews, features, and buying guides. He also writes about storage servers, audio products, and the semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.