If you’re wondering the whereabouts of those Wi-Fi 6E solutions TP-Link promised back in January; your guess is as good as mine.
And today, the company announced one more impressive-sounding router to its long list of so-far-vaporware Wi-Fi 6E hardware, the Archer AXE200 Omni.
The detail of the new router is still sketchy — likely because it’s not made yet — but it supposedly has one novelty: the mechanically auto-adjusting antennas.
TP-Link Archer AXE200 Omni: A Wi-Fi 6E router of a few firsts
The networking vendor says the new design removes “the need for manual antennas adjustment, automatically optimizing to deliver best WiFi connections to all devices.”
The effectiveness of this novelty feature is to be determined. Right off the bat, though, it seems more like a gimmick.
That’s because, in my experience, the antennas’ positions have little to do with a home router’s coverage or performance. And TP-Link has made flagship routers of which the antennas can’t be adjusted at all, like the Archer GX90 or Archer AX11000.
Not to nitpick, but the new router’s name, “Omni,” seems a bit counterintuitive with the idea of antenna adjustment.
And the detail of the new router’s new feature is also unclear, such as the mechanism for adjustment or the conditions that would automatically trigger the change of antennas’ positions.
Or maybe you have to do that manually via a button on the app/web user interface. Judging from the photos, though, it seems the antennas can only be opened up or collapsed on the router’s top — indeed a gimmick. But we’ll have to wait and see.
For now, there are a few things that you can count on this router — that is, if it indeed materializes.
First, this is another Wi-Fi 6E machine, and it features a dual Multi-Gig port, including one 10Gbps LAN port and one 2.5Gbps WAN/LAN port.
These ports alone are enough to make those looking to go beyond Gigabit happy. So far, this is the first announced Wi-Fi 6E router that has two Multi-Gig ports.
On top of that, you can expect the new router to have a similar web interface, mobile, and networking settings/features as existing routers in TP-Link’s Archer family.
According to the networking vendors, the new Archer AXE200 Omni will support its OneMesh feature right out of the box and also comes with HomeShield for online protection and Parental Controls.
Availability and pricing
TP-Link says it will be showcasing the new Archer AXE200 Omni at CES 2022 as an Innovation Awards Honoree and ship it “in 2022” for a suggested retail cost of $499.99.
Considering the other TP-Link Wi-Fi 6E hardware that hasn’t materialized, I wouldn’t hold my breath for this new router, but do check back next year for more. I’m happy to be proven wrong.