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This review is from: TP-LINK - Google OnHub Dual-Band Wireless AC1900 Gigabit Router -Blue
Pros: First impressions (before powering up and setting up):
Good looking, I like the design. It passed the wife’s test: says that our previous router, the TP-LINK Archer C8 looked like a white grasshopper (with it’s three antennas on top, spread at different angles); while the OnHub looks like it should be right where it is, on our desk in our home office.
Powering up and setting up:
Very easy setup! If it wasn’t UNDER five minutes, it was dang close to five. Download the app, “Google On” from the Play Store. Plug in all of your cables. Wait for the ring to pulse. Open the app. Follow the instructions… it’s that simple.
You still get advanced settings through the Google On app used to administrate the OnHub… Advanced Networking includes: DNS (was set to Automatic… Googles DNS servers), WAN (DHCP, Static IP, PPPoE), Extended Settings (in Advanced Networking) gets your Stat IP addresses, Port forwarding, and UPnP.
It’s very cool that you can see what devices are connected to your OnHub network (in the Google On app) AND how much bandwidth they are utilizing.
Cons: None of these are super deal-breakers, more like hyper-critical nit-picks:
First impressions (before powering up and setting up):
Only one LAN port… I got around this by adding a 5 port gigabit switch in our home office (Brother all-in-one needs a wired connection, so does our office workstation = 2 ports). It’s not so bad, because there’s a work-around, but after spending $200 on a wireless router, you’ve got to spend another $30 to fix the one LAN port issue.
Powering up and setting up:
Had to re-arrange plugs on my power strip...the provided power adapter is a little “wide”.
Only indicator(s) are the “mood” ring on the top of the router.
I can’t help but notice that it will not give me traffic statistics for my wired clients. All of their information shows up… Device Name, Status (Connected to OnHub), IP Address, and MAC address… all the while Download and Upload activity are “Unknown”.
Overnight, after setting up the OnHub… it changed wifi channels: now using ch. 11 for 2.4Ghz and ch. 39 for 5Ghz. I know it does this based on all of the other wifi networks in your neighborhood… but now my signal strengths have dropped an average of 10dB on both bands. It’d be best if it gave the user a choice… let Google do everything… or let me choose what channels I want to use. Heck, I’d even let Google suggest channels… just give me the dang choice!
I haven’t found a way to give my devices custom nicknames… so my wife’s iPad shows up as “iPad”... luckily we only have one of those, but we both have Galaxy S5s… and they both show up as “Android device”. It’d be nice to call our Blu Ray player “Living Room Blu Ray” instead of just “Panasonic” as it currently appears. (This was the same case with the D-Link DGL-5500… among all of its other shortcomings).
The OnHub can ONLY be administered from the Google On app… if you navigate to the router gateway… it brings up a page that says “Welcome. Download the Google On app to get started. If you already have the app, open it to access network settings and find help.” Further down the page is another message: “OnHub Status: Online OnHub is online. Open the Google On app to access more information.” I guess the web UI either a. isn’t coming at all in future firmware updates, USE THE DANG APP! b. Might be coming later in a firmware update, but USE THE DANG APP! or c. Probably coming later in a firmware update. Trust me, I like the app… but it’d be nice to get a web UI too, but I guess that might be too advanced a maneuver for the folks looking to purchase an OnHub in the first place.
Broadcasts one SSID for both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz… I usually segment my devices based on what is the maximum wifi spec they can achieve. We have two 1st generation Chromecasts (2.4Ghz only) that I like to keep separated on the 2.4Ghz band, while our Galaxy S5’s, iPads, and everything else gets separated on the 5GHz band. Maybe that’s just crazy… but the OnHub doing this for me is a little un
Other Thoughts: Packaging and Un-boxing:
Very “Apple” like packaging… what you would expect to get when purchasing a $200 wireless router.
2 ethernet cables (flat)
1 AC power adapter
Color code card
“setup instructions” printed on the inside of the lid
Powering up and setting up:
IT MAKES NOISES!!! Pairs with a “song” and then makes more noises when it’s “building your network."
There are plenty of other AC routers that don’t tip the price-point scale at around $200. First, let’s recap the good:
- Setup is a BREEZE… short of plugging the cables in for you, anyone could be up and running within minutes
- Sleek design… it looks good and you won’t want to hide it away.
- Great bandwidth monitoring from the app… you can see who’s connected and how much bandwidth they are pulling (at least wireless clients). You can also prioritize a single client for a specific amount of time.
Now for the not so good:
- Only one LAN port… I got around this by adding a 5 port gigabit switch in our home office (Brother all-in-one needs a wired connection, so does our office workstation = 2 ports). It’s not so bad, because there’s a work-around, but after spending $200 on a wireless router, you’ve got to spend another $30 to fix the one LAN port issue.
- Can only be administered through the Google On app… not a huge deal… but it would be nice to get the same info that the app has, but in a web UI.
- Can’t nickname your devices… this is nothing new, as I’ve said before, I experienced this before with a D-Link DGL-5500… things can get confusing if you have multiple phones and / or tablets of the same operating system (my wife and I both have Galaxy S5’s and both show up as “Android device”).
- Broadcasts one SSID for both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz… I usually segment my devices based on what is the maximum wifi spec they can achieve. We have two 1st generation Chromecasts (2.4Ghz only) that I like to keep separated on the 2.4Ghz band, while our Galaxy S5’s, iPads, and everything else gets separated on the 5GHz band. Maybe that’s just crazy… but the OnHub doing this for me is a little uncomfortable (it often places devices that can utilize the 5Ghz band on the 2.4Ghz, so then they only get 2.4Ghz speeds).
Buy it because: it looks good and is easy as pie. Also Google has said they’re going to keep it fresh with firmware updates every once in awhile (...to enable new features?!?!); you’re sort of investing in it now and hopefully down the road it will do more. I feel like parents or grandparents could handle this without any issues.
Skip it because: there’s only one LAN port, can only be administered through the Google On app., can’t nickname devices, Broadcasts one SSID for both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands, lacks advanced networking features of other more affordable routers. Not for advanced users… yet.
Pros: Works with all of the advertised printers.
Cons: None so far!
Other Thoughts: Maybe it's just me, but I feel better buying factory cartridges for our printers. Sure, you could go for after-market or off-brand to save a few bucks and it might work. It might also NOT work and what did you actually save?READ FULL REVIEW