If your Wi-Fi at home is slow, your smart home devices are slow to connect or things just aren’t working as well as they should be ,your Wi-Fi could be the problem. But before you start shopping for routers, even the eero Pro 6E there’s something you need to know, and that’s that 6GHz Wi-Fi is here and that may affect your purchase and your bandwidth. Stay with me to learn more…
eero Pro 6E Wi-Fi Review
Not too long ago, Wi-Fi was still a cool new thing, and you were impressed if you could connect somewhere in public and pleased with any wireless service in your home that wasn’t accompanied by the sound of a phone dialing and the ding ding screeeeeee of dial up internet. Times have changed: the odds are good that most smart home devices (plus your smartphone, tablet and laptop) need that Wi-Fi to work. While many homes (and smart home device manufacturers, to be honest) still rely on 2.4GHz, 5GHz is more common, but because we live in the future, we’re already looking add even faster 6 GHz speeds.
What is 6GHz Wi-Fi? Why do I need 6GHz Wi-Fi?
So what does this mean? In a nutshell, there are now more airwaves that our routers can use to share Wi-Fi signals, meaning more bandwidth and less interference. The addition of the 6GHz band beginning in 2020 is considered by some the biggest deal in connectivity since the FCC allowed Wi-Fi in 1989. The addition of the 6GHz band essentially quadruples the amount of space available for routers and connected devices.
What is eero Pro 6E?
The eero Pro 6E is a mesh Wi-Fi network and is designed to be a new whole-house Wi-Fi solution that offers up faster, better 6G while also supporting legacy bands like 2.4GHz, 5Ghz. It can also act as a smart home hub, able to handle Bluetooth LE, and Zigbee, plus the emerging Thread network which will help with smart home gadgets and Alexa enabled smart devices. Being a mesh Wi-Fi system, eero comes with one or multiple pods that can be placed around your house which will boost Wi-Fi to those areas, meaning no more dead spots.
Should I choose eero 6, 6+ or Pro 6E?
eero has three models of its newest Wi-Fi mesh router line, the eero 6, the eero 6+, and the eero Pro 6E. If you have a smaller house or space and don’t need the 6G support, the eero 6 will serve you just fine. If your house is larger (5,500 square feet), and you want the 6G coverage, the 6+ is right for you. If you’re a heavy user, anticipate a lot of 6G usage, or just have a large house (6000 square feet and up), you’ll be looking for the Pro 6E. Keep in mind that walls will somewhat limit the range of Wi-Fi signals, so a three-story house, even with smaller square footage, might need an extra unit compared to a larger bungalow.
What’s so special about eero Pro 6E? Who is eero Pro 6E for?
The Pro 6E supports Wi-Fi 6E (which is what makes the 6GHz band possible), but it goes further. It can also accept incoming ethernet signals at up to 2.5 gigabits per second. If you don’t have any 6G devices, the eero Pro 6E will use that band to pass traffic back and forth between smart devices to make your wireless network even smoother. Eero Pro 6E also supports over 100+connected devices and covers up to 6,000 sq. ft.
What to expect from eero Pro 6E?
The entire eero Pro 6E system is cloud-based and allows you to monitor—and even limit specific devices‑on the network and see where your data is being used. Is your kid up on his phone later than he should be? You can turn off his signal. eero even offers a monthly subscription that has more robust parental controls.
What’s new in this version?
Compared to eero Pro 6, supports network speeds up to 2.3 Gbps, when using both wired (up to a gigabit) and wireless (up to 1.3 Gbps) client devices.
You can directly access the 6 GHz radio band with Wi-Fi 6E capable devices. eero Pro 6E also supports 100+ connected devices.
Setting up eero Pro 6E
The reason a lot of people don’t want to change anything to do with their Wi-Fi network is that it seems like it’s going to be a hassle. Eero Pro 6E is designed to be easy to install and set up—you don’t need to be a network administrator or understand packets and ports to set up the Pro 6E. I had the entire system set up in about 5 minutes.
From my experience, it’s as simple as plugging in the main unit, connecting it via the included ethernet cable to your router, and following the instructions on the eero app. If you have a multi-pack, it’s worth noting you can use any of the pods as the main Gateway device. Then you repeat the process with your other pods or units, if you have them. Place them where your Wi-Fi signal is weak, plug them in and follow the set up steps. Before long you’ll have a stronger more robust and faster network.
During the set up, the eero app will even suggest you can keep the same Wi-Fi network name as your old network to avoid having to re-establish connections and re-set up smart home devices, which is huge.
Design & size
The Pro 6E unit measures 2.36 inches by 3.86 by 3.86 inches; it won’t be an eyesore wherever you end up placing it. With no big antennas or sounds, it will be barely noticeable in your space. The units come with a 1-year limited warranty, and since eero is an Amazon-owned company, your customer service and returnability won’t be a problem.
Will eero Pro 6E make Wi-Fi faster? Kinda…
If you’re facing a slow or clogged home Wi-Fi network you should notice things start to get faster. Technically 6GHz isn’t itself faster, but adding bandwidth helps reduce congestion and slowdowns. With the caveat that naturallty this might be hampered by your home internet provider offers.
If you’re not having any major problems but you are dealing with dead spots, adding one of the eero pods should instantly improve signal quality wherever you are.
In truth however, you shouldn’t actually notice a whole lot. There’s no confetti or sparklers that will go off when your homes Wi-Fi network improves. But that’s OK. All the improvements are happening where you can’t see them.
Using eero Pro 6E in my space
Admittedly I have kind of a unique situation. As a tech writer, blogger, and video producer, I have a mountain of smart home devices in the house. Not to mention to working at home adults, multiple laptops and smart phones, and it’s easy to understand that our old Wi-Fi network was struggling to keep up. In our home, I have so many smart lights, that they are often fighting each other for bandwidth. Since installing eero pro in my home I’ve noticed a lot less trouble with connection, and my smart home gadgets seem much more responsive. When it comes to basic Wi-Fi and working from home bandwidth, my video calls are less laggy, there’s never any break up, and in general things seem to just work better.
I’ve never been the type to download software to run specialized speed tests on my upload and download speeds… You can certainly find that information on Google or YouTube if you’re looking for it (and you can actually view your upload and download speeds on the eero app). I’m here as an average user to tell you what the practical observations of using this system are. And that that I have zero dead spots, and better service overall after installing this device.
Using eero app
The eero app is your handy and easily accessible control centre to manage your Wi-Fi network. You can see at a glance which devices are connected to your network, you can see specifically which pod they are connected to, and when they were last active. With a click, you can pause that device’s access to Wi-Fi inside the app.
You can generate a guest network if you want, and get push notifications when a new user or device joins your network… perfect for keeping an eye on security and potential nefarious use. For a potentially complex Wi-Fi system, the eero app makes it dead simple to manage.
The flip side of this is that some more advanced users may find the app limited in its usefulness.
And if you’re looking for more in depth parental controls like content filters or online threat oversight, that will set you back about $3/month for an eero Secure subscription. You can add a Virtual Private Network or VPS for a further $10/month.
One of the other considerations for purchasing this product will be that it sets you up for the future. Even though there are not a lot of devices yet that utilize the 6G net work, there certainly will be over the coming years. Opting in now keeps you connected to older and current devices while ensuring you are prepared for improving technology in the future. At the same time, if you don’t plan to expand your smart home, or you aren’t noticing problems in the house, you might not need this kind of horsepower.
Overall review: eero Pro 6E
I’ve had the eero Pro 6E in my home for about a month now and I’m very happy with it. I find it has helped me reduce congestion and its been keeping things like my smart lights from falling off the network due to there being too many devices on at once. To recap, the eero Pro 6E is purpose made for those looking to begin adopting 6GHz-ready devices, and those in very large spaces.
When it comes to the downsides, some advanced users may find the app doesn’t give them enough tools for management. And it’s worth pointing out the eero Pro 6E is extremely expensive.
A 3-pack of pods (which I opted for) sells for $699US/$999CAD but a single pod is available for $299US/$429CAD.
I’d say those who need this and know why they need it will be pretty happy with it, but if you’re just looking for a wee boost or to fix a small deadspot in your home, this is a cannon and what you need is a pea shooter. You can probably get an adequate fix for about a fraction of the price, particularly by entertaining something like eero 6.
What considerations are there when shopping for Wi-Fi?
When deciding on a Wi-Fi router or repeater, there are a few things to consider. First, you’ll want to ensure your router can cover the area you need. If you have a smaller apartment or office, or you only need to cover a single floor of a house (provided it isn’t a huge floor), a single router with antennae will be more than sufficient. If you need to cover a house, or you notice your Wi-Fi signal drops off in the yard, or when you sit on that one chair, odds are you need more broadcast signal or an extender of some kind.
You’ll also want to consider whether you need a device that broadcasts a 5G or 6G signal or whether a standard 2.4G is enough. Most routers these days tend to be at least dual-band, and you’ll likely have at least a couple of devices that work with 5G.
You’ll also want to ensure that the Wi-Fi router can handle the speeds you’re paying your provider for. On that note, you’ll want to ensure the router plays well with your ISP (Internet Service Provider). This shouldn’t be an issue for larger ISPs, but some smaller ISPs may have limitations on what their systems can handle. Call your ISP to ask if you’re not sure.
What is Mesh Wi-Fi?
If you’re currently using a standard antenna router as your sole source of Wi-Fi, you’re about to get very excited. Mesh Wi-Fi is a new concept in serving up Wi-Fi signals throughout the house or building. Suppose a single antenna router is a person standing on a soap box shouting out an announcement. In that case, Mesh Wi-Fi is like one, two, or three assistants moving their soapboxes further away and repeating what the first announcer said. If you’re not into analogies, the first unit plugs into your router, and the second is placed on another floor or at a distance from the first. (If you have a third unit, you’d place it a distance or floor away from the second). The signal is passed instantly from unit to unit, making your entire house a mesh of Wi-Fi coverage.
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