Apple exited the home Wi-Fi market at the wrong time

“One of the more interesting news items of 2018 was Apple discontinuing the AirPort lineup. From the first Airport product to the last final AirPort Extreme, Apple was selling premium Wi-Fi hardware devices at a time when most people I knew were content with a $30 router from Walmart,” Bradley Chambers writes for 9to5Mac. “Since they released their final AirPort product, the market has finally shifted up.”

“As end-users are starting to load their home networks with more than a single laptop and a few smartphones, people have realized that having a high-quality router (with whole house coverage) is not a luxury. If you want to load your house up with smart home products, multiple iOS devices, Apple TVs, etc., you have to invest in the infrastructure,” Chambers writes. “Plain and simple, Apple exited the home networking business at the exact wrong time.”

eero's 2nd generation  Home Wi-Fi System (1 eero + 2 eero Beacons)
eero’s 2nd generation Home Wi-Fi System (1 eero + 2 eero Beacons)

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Yup. But, you know, Apple is strapped for people and cash, so…

While we’d rather have all-Apple setups with AirPort mesh systems facilitating connectivity, had Apple’s management had the foresight to create them, we’re more than happy to use and recommend the very Apple-esque eero Home Wi-Fi System which offers tri-band WiFi radios, simultaneous 2.4GHz, 5.2GHz and 5.8GHz wireless. 2×2 MU-MIMO, Beamforming, IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, and more.

Apple removes all AirPort products from online and retail stores – November 17, 2018
How to set up your home network for many Apple TVs, Macs, iPhones, and iPads – June 12, 2018
Apple begins to sell out of AirPort base stations – May 17, 2018
Requiem for the AirPort base station: A testament to everything Apple was and isn’t anymore – April 27, 2018
Apple makes yet another short-sighted decision: Apple has discontinued a product that it should have made a cornerstone of its home automation and entertainment ecosystem – April 27, 2018
Apple’s decision to discontinue AirPort products is the wrong decision at the wrong time – April 27, 2018
Apple pulls plug on AirPort Wi-Fi router business – April 26, 2018
eero’s new mesh WiFi system packs more power in an Apple-esque design – June 29, 2017
AppleInsider reviews eero Wi-Fi: ‘A solid option for Apple’s outgoing AirPort’ – February 27, 2017
With eero, you can kiss slow Wi-Fi goodbye forever – February 10, 2017


    1. Speaking of routers, I highly recommend the Synology RT2600AC wireless router. Outstanding web based interface and programmability. I’m fact the ads got so bad on MDN, causing Safari to constantly refresh and Hong, that I started going through the ads, tracking down their sources, and blocking them at the router. I hate doing that because I want MDN to do well and all, but if I can’t finish a comment before the browser resets and MDN is taking up 3GB of RAM, something is wrong.

      1. “but if I can’t finish a comment before the browser resets and MDN is taking up 3GB of RAM, something is wrong.”

        Interesting and wonder if there is a connection since the ad explosion. Using the MDN app on my SE without a case, it only takes a couple minutes for the back of the phone to heat up causing me to close the app and phone until is cools off. Needless to say, rarely use the app only to read headlines, close and go to the browser…

    1. Cook runs Apple through a cheap telescope, if he can’t see the future filling the eyepiece, he shuts off the product funding. It’s why these days the company is so often playing catch up sadly. Very Ballmeresque.

        1. Where is Apple’s AirPower? One year since Tim Cook announced it and still no launch date. Oh, that’s right, emojis are more important to Apple than compelling hardware.

          That’s Tim Cook’s “leadership” for you.

            1. LOL.. fan boy. Whatever. They will make a more powerful unit of that I have no doubt. You will still be whining about lack of a Pro machine.

            2. Its not about worth.. its about having a comprehensive line up in their walled garden. ..
              The value is in the Comprehensiveness and overall synergy.. not dollers and cents profit from every single item.

          1. Alan, you are right in more ways than one.

            Steve Jobs was famous for looking out 10 years into the future to have a good idea of what to start developing TODAY.

            Right now, we users are no longer using single “computing” products, but an array of connected devices for work, play, entertainment & transactional activities.

            I would prefer to use all Mac equipment, because I can believe I would have less time, and thus money spent, to get and keep the whole shebang running fast and right.

      1. Sadly, everything you stated is TRUE. Whenever the bean counter CEO looks through the cheap telescope, without a creative chromosome in his body and lack of vision, he does not trust his team in making products better than the competition. Just kill it is Cook’s track record. Obviously, the long creative trail to perfection winds the iPhone CEO after just a few steps. Cook is on track to overtake Ballmer on trail. The cure is Scott Forstall…

  1. One thing you have to be careful about is the wired speed connection capability. I have a gigabit internet connection. The Netgear router, the single most expensive unit I tried, could only give me 700Mb/s. Though it did do best with wireless.

  2. Apple wifi was a hobby and like many Apple hobbies it died on the vine.

    Let’s be honest, as a multi unit owner, apple wifi was really 3rd rate.

    Easy to set up for inexperienced people at a VERY premium price.

    But you sacrificed features for ease of set up, with no “expert” mode.

    I dropped that junk years ago and moved over to Ubiquiti. It’s so nice not having to restart a router to get your speed back or random stops in internet.

    1. When the iBook launched AirPort was central to the whole deal. Apple was one of only two computer makers that brought wi-fi to the masses. I guess times change.

  3. The Death of the Apple Ecosystem was announced when the Airport series of routers were ignored for years. It was confirmed when the Airport was canceled with no viable replacement.

    Now we have $1000 phones that most people can’t afford, a big new HQ building with impressive videos of it for us to view, and a system of Mac computers that is ot complete and seems to be an after thought.

    No doubt a new upstart is on the way to ‘change everything’. It can’t come to soon.

  4. It’s simple… Apple doesn’t need to be in the router biz. And hasn’t for about 4 to 5 years. It used to be that I required one of my AP Base Stations to be cable connected to an ISP’s counter in order for any of my Macs to connect to internet service.

    Not anymore. I haven’t used either of my Base Stations in about 4 to 5 years because the various routers my ISPs have furnished have worked just fine with a minimum of effort on my part.

    Whether this was due to improvements in Macs, routers, or both, I don’t know. But things just work and don’t require me futzing with router settings or messing with Airport software.

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