TP-Link has ventured into the Wi-Fi system market, with not one, but two products.
The first system is called the Deco M5 Router. It includes three identical hardware units, each about the side of the Eero, and has two network ports. Each unit can work as an independent AC1300 router, and they can also work together as a Wi-Fi system. What’s cool about the Deco is that each it uses USB-C as charging port.
The second system is called Deco M5 Plus Router with Powerline. It’s basically the same as the first with one addition: It uses a different power adapter that also works as a powerline adapter. In other words, when using a new Powerline-enabled power adapter, TP-Link’s first Wi-Fi system will become its second system.
And now, apart from Wi-Fi, each unit in the system has the option of using the electrical wiring of the home to connect to one another. TP-Link says the system will automatically detect in real-time which are faster, the Wi-Fi or the Powerline connection, to use as the back-haul connection to connect the hardware units together.
As far as what Powerline standard is used, that’s not available right now.
The Deco M5 three-pack is available now for $299; that puts it in line with a Google WiFi three-pack and will save you cash over Linksys’s offering. The good news for potential customers is that mesh networking options are becoming more and more commonplace, so hopefully prices will start declining a bit as all the players scramble to get your dollars.
In addition to the Deco product line, TP-Link also unveiled the Archer C2300 AC2300 Wireless MU-MIMO Gigabit Router that supports Wave 2 Wi-Fi and vRE650 AC2600 Wi-Fi Range Extender. This extender will work with all existing router and access points to extend a Wi-Fi network. Other than that, no more information on these devices is available.
TP-Link says it’s going to release more details on these products later this year.