Best Products Networking The 8 Best Wireless Router Brands of 2020 Make sure you're buying the perfect router for home or office Share Pin Email Print The Ultimate Router Buying Guide The Ultimate Router Buying Guide Introduction Router Basics What Is a Router and How Does It Work? How to Pick the Right Wireless Router Router Standards Explained Modem vs Router Can You Use Two Routers Same Network? Do I Need a Modem and a Router? Routers, Switches and Hubs Explained How to Find Your Router's IP Addresses What Is MIMO Technology? Best Names for Routers & Home Networks Best Placement for Wireless Routers How to Set up a Home Network Router Best Overall Routers Best Wireless Routers Best Cable Modem/Router Combos Best Long-Range Routers Best Secure Routers Best Parental Control Routers Best DD-WRT Routers Best Routers for Under $100 Best Routers for Under $50 Best 802.11ac Wi-Fi Wireless Routers Best 802.11n Routers Best 802.11g Wireless Broadband Routers Best VPN Routers Best Gaming Routers Best By Brand & Range Best Linksys Routers Best Wireless Router Brands Best Netgear Routers Best Routers at Walmart Top Routers Reviewed Google Wifi Review Netgear Orbi Review Netgear C3700 Review Netgear C3000 Review Linksys EA8300 Review Linksys EA9500 Review Linksys WRT3200ACM Review Samsung SmartThings Router Review Asus RT-AC88U Gaming Router Review Linksys AC1900 Review Best Router Essentials Best Wi-Fi Extenders Best Wi-Fi USB Adapters Best Cable Modems Best Powerline Network Adapters Best Surge Protectors By Jesse Hollington Writer Jesse Hollington is a tech writer with 10+ years' experience. He has written for iLounge, Forbes, Yahoo, The Independent, and iDropNews, among others. our editorial process Twitter LinkedIn Jesse Hollington Updated February 12, 2020 34 34 people found this article helpful Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links. The Rundown Asus RT-AC88U at Amazon"The 802.11ac RT-AC88U consistently ranks at the top of every “best router” list and for very good reason."Google Nest Wi-Fi at Amazon"Includes reliable mesh network performance along with smart speakers and Google Home integration"Linksys WRT3200ACM at Amazon"The WRT3200ACM might not look like much, it's souped up with MU-MIMO technology for fast Wi-Fi speeds simultaneously on multiple devices."Netgear Orbi at Amazon"Provides Netgear's solid technology to an advanced mesh Wi-Fi system that offers up to 5,000 square feet of coverage."Synology RT2600ac at Amazon"Synology ventured into the wireless router space some years ago and one of the best results has been the RT2600 wireless gigabit router."Portal at Amazon"Portal’s recent entry into the wireless router market hasn’t gone unnoticed, thanks to its outstanding product line."TP-Link Deco M5 at Amazon"The Deco M5 whole home Wi-Fi system offers a superb wireless router system that can cover anywhere from 1,500 square feet with a single unit to more than 4,500 square feet with a three-pack."Trendnet TEW-828DRU at Amazon"The TEW-828DRU Tri-Band AC3200 wireless router offers max speed of 3,200Mbps (600Mbps on 2.4GHz, 1300 + 1300Mbps on 5GHz) ensuring HD streaming will be viewed buffer-free." Our Top Picks Asus (RT-AC88U) 4.5 Buy on Amazon What We Like Excellent performance Good feature set Powerful software What We Don't Like Weaker range compared to other models Asus hardly needs an introduction since it's one of the brands at the forefront of mobile, computers and (wireless) routers. And while they might be best known for the former products, the latter has resulted in some fantastic, top-of-the-line wireless routers. The 802.11ac RT-AC88U consistently ranks at the top of every “best router” list and for very good reason. Capable of 5GHz speeds at 2100Mbps and 1000Mbps at 2.4GHz, the AC88U offers total signal coverage reach of more than 5,000 square feet. Additionally, you’ll find four times the total signal capacity with MU-MIMO (multi-user, multiple input, and multiple output) technology that helps maintain signal strength even with multiple connected users online at the same time. Asus RT-AC88U Gaming Router Review Google (Nest Wi-Fi) Buy on Amazon What We Like Attractive design Integrates with Google Home Point units double as smart speakers What We Don't Like No Ethernet ports on points Lacks dedicated backhaul channel Google of course needs no introduction, as the company has an established reputation in everything from online search to e-mail to mobile phones, but you might not actually be aware that it also makes a pretty slick wireless router system as part of its Nest home brand. The search giant actually first entered the wireless router market several years ago, partnering with TP-Link to create the OnHub from Google, and while that initial entry was met with tempered fanfare, Google took what it learned from that experience and created its first mesh wireless system, the Google Wi-Fi, which provided efficient coverage for your home that was easy to set up. The company followed that up with the Google Nest Wi-Fi, its second-generation model that expands on all of the great technology from the first version and adds Google Assistant and Google Home integration, with each remote point module doubling as a smart speaker. A two-module system can cover homes of up to 3,800 square feet, while a third point module extends that coverage to 5,400 square feet. Dual-band Wi-Fi provides more than respectable speeds throughout your home, although the lack of a dedicated backhaul channel means that performance may drop a bit when you're further from the main router and relying on one of the points instead. The 10 Best Mesh Wi-Fi Network Systems of 2020 Linksys (WRT3200ACM) 4.7 Buy on AmazonBuy on Linksys.com What We Like Open source firmware Fast 5GHz speeds Familiar nostalgic look What We Don't Like Sluggish 2.4GHz speeds Subpar long range performance Easily one of the most venerable names in the wireless router space, Linksys has a longstanding reputation for building fantastic products. While the WRT3200ACM might not look like much since it Linksys chose to maintain its nostalgic appearance, it's actually souped up with MU-MIMO technology for fast Wi-Fi speeds simultaneously on multiple devices. Speed buffs will also enjoy the inclusion of Tri-Stream 160 technology, which has double the bandwidth on the 5GHz band and ups the speed to a super-fast 2.6Gbps. Additionally, the WRT3200ACM is open source, which means that advanced users can make changes or modify the router to suit their specific needs, with options such setting up a secure VPN, creating a hotspot or turning the router into a web server. The 10 Best Linksys Routers of 2020 Linksys WRTAC3200 Router Review Netgear (Orbi) 4.5 Buy on AmazonBuy on Walmart What We Like Fast and reliable performance Full home coverage Beautiful aesthetics What We Don't Like Expensive Older devices can complicate things Established in 2002, Netgear has consistently been at the forefront of consumer network products, and its lineup of routers is widely regarded as the best in their class. Netgear makes some of the most advanced and highest-performing standalone routers you can find, and with its new Orbi system it has moved into an innovative new direction in both design and technology with its first dedicated mesh network solution. Orbi features a design that may be unrecognizable from Netgear's more traditional sleek black routers, since it's aesthetic is intended to look good in your living room, but there's no doubt that the technology inside is Netgear through and through, offering a tri-band Wi-Fi system that provides one 5GHz band and one 2.4GHz band for your devices with speeds of up to 866Mbps and 400Mbps, respectively, while the second 5GHz band is used as a "backhaul" to maintain an ultrafast connection for the mesh network. This gives it enough range to cover a 5,000 square foot home reliably, assisted by MU-MIMO and beamforming technologies that make sure your devices get maximum performance. The 8 Best Netgear Routers of 2020 Netgear Orbi Review Synology (RT2600ac) 4.5 Buy on AmazonBuy on Newegg.com What We Like Long range Fast performance Can double as a NAS device What We Don't Like Fewer Ethernet ports than we'd like While the Synology name doesn’t carry the same weight as brands such as Linksys or Netgear, the company has a storied history dating back to the year 2000. Originally focused on simplifying data backup or centralizing data storage, Synology ventured into the wireless router space some years ago and one of the best results has been the RT2600 wireless gigabit router. Featuring a powerful 4x4 802.11ac radio with MU-MIMO technology and up to 2.53Gbps wireless speeds, Synology matches the heavily competitive market with an outstanding product. It's also capable of supporting NAS-grade apps like a VPN client or server, and the RT2600 shows the strength of the Synology name by allowing a hard drive to connect to the router to create a personal cloud service akin to Google Drive or Dropbox. The setup process is a little more tedious than competitive brands, but given that this is only Synology’s second attempt at a wireless router, there’s plenty to rave about. The 10 Best 802.11ac Wi-Fi Wireless Routers of 2020 Synology RT2600ac Wi-Fi Router Review Portal Buy on Amazon What We Like Elegant design Inexpensive mesh solution Good coverage What We Don't Like Poor signal handoff Large footprint Portal’s recent entry into the wireless router market hasn’t gone unnoticed, thanks to its outstanding product line. In fact, the entire product line is just one device. Built and founded by engineers who wanted to create a better internet experience, the Portal wireless router and its nine dedicated antennas can cover homes up to 3,000 square feet with a single unit, doubling to 6,000 square feet with the two-pack purchase. The mesh Wi-Fi system is still relatively new technology, but it eliminates the need for Wi-Fi extenders by eliminating dead zones and buffering by dropping a wide signal net over an entire space. Easily set up through the downloadable Android and iOS app, the Portal is ready to connect right out of the box with smart devices such as Amazon’s Alexa, Google Home, Nest, and a multitude of other smart home products. Gamers will love the 4K-ready signal strength and streaming without buffering over the 2.4GHz or 5GHz dual-band Wi-Fi antennas. The 7 Best 802.11g Wireless Broadband Routers of 2020 TP-Link (Deco M5) Buy on Amazon What We Like Affordable mesh system Fast and easy setup Ethernet ports for wired devices What We Don't Like Slower performance than rivals No access point mode Founded in 1996, TP-Link has a long and rich history of providing some of the best WLAN (wireless local area network) devices ever built to get people online. And the Deco M5 whole home Wi-Fi system offers a superb wireless router system that can cover anywhere from 1,500 square feet with a single unit to more than 4,500 square feet with a three-pack, thanks to its support for mesh technology. Automatically choosing the best wireless connection for connected devices, the Deco M5 utilizes Adaptive Routing Technology to help your Wi-Fi connection stay fast. Setting up is a snap with the downloadable smartphone app, so you'll be up and online within minutes. Additionally, the Deco M5 includes antivirus and malware protection courtesy of Trend Micro, so you can bank on staying secure and in control. Trendnet (TEW-828DRU Tri-Band AC3200) Buy on Amazon What We Like Tri-band Wi-Fi USB 3.0 port Good range What We Don't Like Build quality isn't great TRENDnet doesn’t have the same name recognition as Linksys, Asus, or Google, but this brand still makes outstanding products, including routers. The TEW-828DRU Tri-Band AC3200 wireless router offers maximum speeds of 3,200Mbps (600Mbps on 2.4GHz, 1300 + 1300Mbps on 5GHz) ensuring HD streaming will be viewed buffer-free. Released in 2015, the 828DRU adds beamforming technology to increase real-time signal performance by directly pushing the signal strength in your specific location rather than randomly throughout the entire home or office. Additionally, smart connect technology will group slower devices on a separate band from faster devices to ensure that every connected user sees ideal network performance. The 9 Best Wireless Routers of 2020 Tested by How We Tested Our reviewers spent 47 hours testing a router from one of the top-rated brands out there. To get the most complete results, our testers took it home, hooked it up to multiple devices, and observed its performance. We asked them to consider the most important features when using this router, from its design to its speed and range. We've outlined them here so that you, too, know what to look for when shopping. What to Look for in a Wireless Router Brand Reputation - Consider how long a specific brand has been around. Is it a newer brand or an established contender? While the former doesn’t necessarily equate to an unreliable product, there is a level of confidence when selecting a brand that has stood the test of time.Support - How much help might you need when setting up or configuring your new router? Be sure to check online reviews and comments by other purchasers to see how well a company’s technical support has fared over the years.Technology - Most companies producing wireless routers will be decently matched when it comes to the technology they place inside their products. However, some newer technologies such as mesh networks — essential for a large house — are only available from some manufacturers. Test Results: Netgear Orbi 4.5 Buy on AmazonBuy on Walmart What We Like Fast and reliable performance Full home coverage Beautiful aesthetics What We Don't Like Expensive Older devices can complicate things Lifewire One of our testers said the system “provided seamless connectivity throughout the entire home” and added that he could definitely see a difference in his wireless speeds. Our reviewers liked that the network is easily configurable with an option to turn off connectivity for individual devices and "robust parental controls" that help you monitor kids’ online activities thanks to a partnership with Disney. If you’re looking to improve your Wi-Fi range in a large home, this system will definitely deliver, with testers noting that "you can have a gigantic home and still get reliable network performance throughout." While Orbi doesn't come cheap, our reviewers agree that "you’re getting a level of performance that is genuinely worth the price of admission."