The fastest mesh router is the Netgear Orbi 6. Versus the Nest Wifi, CNET’s current top pick in the mesh category, with top wireless transfer speeds of 612 Mbps at a close-range distance of 5 feet, the Netgear Orbi 6 hit a top speed of 666 Mbps — at a distance of 75 feet. Up close, the number was 871 Mbps, which is the fastest speed CNET has ever seen from a mesh router in that test.
When I took the two-piece Orbi system home and tested how fast I was able to connect throughout my house, I saw average speeds at the farthest point from the router that were 95% as fast as my average speeds up close, in the same room as the router. No other mesh system I’ve tested has managed to get any higher than 82% in that same test. Most come in below 60%.
Still, as capable as the high-end Orbi system is, it’s overkill for most folks, especially if your internet connection isn’t at least 500 Mbps. In my home, where my fiber internet plan nets me speeds of up to 300 Mbps, my average speeds throughout the house came in at 289 Mbps with Netgear Orbi, which is better than the whole-home average of 222 Mbps that I saw from Nest Wifi, and better than any other mesh router I’ve tested.
But credit to our new speed king — if you simply want the fastest, best-performing mesh money can buy, look no further.
MacDailyNews Take: If you want to take full advantage of Wi-Fi 6, the Netgear Orbi 6 looks like the best choice right now. Read the full review, as setup also looks to be best-in-class, with the network up and running about 10 minutes after unboxing.