With faster internet speeds and more devices, we’ve been crying out for faster Wi-Fi for ages. That came true with the launch of Wi-Fi 6E. There’s been a growing number of routers to support the standard and, now, Amazon joins the fray with the Eero Pro 6E mesh system.
Similar to the excellent Eero Pro 6, which has seen a price cut to £209 for a single unit, the Pro 6E has the same tri-band networking as the older product but adds in the new 6GHz band. Although the range for 6GHz is less than the 5GHz or 2.4GHz bands, bandwidth is much higher.
When we tested 6GHz performance with the Netgear Orbi RBKE963, we found that 6GHz networking was faster than Gigabit Ethernet; the first time we’ve seen a boundary like this broken. The slight downside is that to use Wi-Fi 6E you need a compatible device and there aren’t many of those at the moment. Find out more about this new Wi-Fi technology in our guide to Wi-Fi 6E.
Overall, Amazon is promising network speeds of up to 2.3Gbps (1Gbps from Ethernet and 1.3Gbps from Wi-Fi). We’ll need to wait until we have a review system to see how fast the mesh kit is.
While the Orbi RBKE963 is an impressive bit of kit, it has one issue: the new system is not compatible with the older system. If you’d already got an Orbi setup, you’d have to ditch it to get Wi-Fi 6E. The Eero system is kinder to the wallet.
All Eero 6 systems are compatible with each other and backwards compatible with older Eero systems. That at least, means that you have a more gently upgrade path. Say you’d bought the Eero Pro 6 system, you could add a single Eero Pro 6E device into the mix, introducing 6GHz Wi-Fi into one area of your home.
Each Eero Pro 6E has two Ethernet ports: one Gigabit Ethernet and the other 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet. For the first device, which acts as a router, the higher-speed port can deliver the fastest internet connections now and in the future. Elsewhere around your home, 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet can help speed up connections for wired devices and, the good news is, the technology runs on the same cabling as Gigabit Ethernet, so you don’t have to swap cables out.
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Smart home and beyond
The Eero Pro 6E has all of the same features as previous Eero routers that we’ve reviewed. That includes a Zigbee hub, so you can connect smart devices directly without having to install additional hubs. Plus, via subscription, you can add parental controls and internet security. Subscriptions start at £2.99 a month.
Price and availability
The Eero Pro 6E is available now from Amazon and costs £349 for a single pack and £799 for a three-pack. The Eero Pro 6 has dropped in price to £209 for a single pack and £599 for a three-pack. And the Eero 6 has dropped in price to just £109 for a single pack and £249 for a three-pack.