The compact mesh units can fill a home with a strong Wi-Fi signal and even include a built-in Google Home speaker for voice commands and music playback, giving owners the same kind of smart speaker control as the Netgear Orbi Voice, an expensive add-on to our previous best mesh Wi-Fi system, the Netgear Orbi. In this post, we are gonna take the Nest Wifi review.
The Nest WiFi kit isn’t ideal – we’d like to see more customization choices and a better range of individual devices – but when compared to competing for mesh systems, the Nest WiFi is smaller and more affordable.
It is more powerful than the Netgear Orbi with Orbi Voice extension and more powerful than the most recent Eero mesh system In other words, when it comes to transmitting Wi-Fi data and music, the two-piece kit takes the lead.
Read our full Nest WiFi review to find out why it’s the greatest mesh Wi-Fi solution available.
Table of Contents
- Excellent performance
- Google Assistant with music
- Simple setup
- Small and unobtrusive
- Short range
- Speaker isn’t loud enough
- Few configuration choices
The Nest WiFi router and extensions feature a 1.4GHz quad-core CPU and a pair of Digital Signal Processors (DSP), as well as far-field voice-pickup technologies, and are built on a bespoke version of Qualcomm’s QCS400 family of processors.
The router has 1GB of RAM and 4GB of flash storage for firmware and configuration, while the extensions have 768MB of RAM and 512MB of storage capacity.
Fortunately, the router authenticates its automated firmware upgrades using a Trusted Platform Module (TPM). This implies that software updates to the system are safe and will only be approved if they are digitally authenticated by Google.
WPA 3 (Wi-Fi Protected Access) security is embedded into the system, however, only a small number of networking devices support this new standard. You can still utilize the more widely used WPA 2.
The router’s highest throughput was 653.2Mbps while it was five feet away from the Nest base unit. That’s a significant improvement over the original Google WiFi (464.3Mbps) and well ahead of the 2019 Eero (342.2Mbps).
The Nest WiFi equipment mostly relies on the Google Home app for setting adjustments, while customization choices are limited. The software can modify the brightness of the router and extensions in addition to installing extensions and creating groups.
At any point, I could conduct a networking test, remotely restart the network, or display the password for the Guest network on a smart display. The router and extension Settings pages provide certain information, such as IP addresses and firmware versions.
Traditional router configuration options, such as creating static IP addresses, controlling ports, and selecting which Wi-Fi channel to use, are absent.
Use the previous Google Wi-Fi app to unlock these more sophisticated capabilities. You may create DHCP reservations or modify the system’s privacy settings from there. It’s a wonder why the two applications haven’t been merged.
Integration of smart homes
Along with the Nest WiFi hardware, Google’s Home app can be used to operate a number of home automation devices, such as the finest smart light bulbs. To add a device, hit the “+” button in the top left corner of the main screen.
Be aware that the Home app is finicky and refuses to recognize a Belkin Wemo light bulb (opens in new tab) and an Amazon Smart plug (opens in new tab).
It works with Philips Hue lights and C by GE light bulbs, as well as Sylvania’s LEDVANCE lights. I was able to switch the lights on and off separately, as well as dim them, using the Home app and the Nest WiFi extension voice commands.
The Nest WiFi outperforms the Netgear Orbi because of its smaller size, superior overall performance, and easy and straightforward setup.
It also includes a Google Home smart speaker, providing it an advantage over the Orbi, which needs the purchase of the Orbi Voice to bring equivalent Alexa capabilities to your home mesh system.
Sure, the range isn’t as wide as we’d like, and the lack of a web interface means you’ll have to set it up using your phone, but it outperforms the Netgear Orbi where it matters most, providing quicker speeds throughout your home. This Nest wifi review alone qualifies as the greatest mesh Wi-Fi system available.
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