Updated 19 Dec 2017
Bottom line: This single-band router supplied by Spark has good incoming ADSL speeds and outgoing WiFi speeds on the 2.4GHz band are OK. For such a small device, it dealt with our load test well with only a 46% drop in speeds, and it breezed through our obstruction test with no impact on speeds.
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Overall score includes:
WiFi performance (60%) – measured at 4m and 10m from the router with the router and laptop in line of sight from each other. We calculated the speeds, in megabits per second (Mbps), by timing how long it took to transfer a 1.1GB file from a network attached storage (NAS) device, connected to the router, to a laptop over WiFi. We repeated the test 3 times on each band (2.4GHz and 5GHz) and at each distance. The speeds from both distances were averaged and scored compared to the speeds expected for the WiFi standards they were using.
Ease of use and setup (20%) – based on an assessment of set up and how easy the device is to use including monitoring and managing network access and changing default settings (service set identifier (SSID), network key/password, encryption and WiFi protected set-up (WPS) settings). We also looked at the ease of accessing advanced functions such as guest networks, virtual private network (VPN), attached external media and parental control tools.
Security (20%) – looked at whether the networks were encrypted, how easy it was to identify them by SSID, and the security of the network key/password.
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