Mesh Wi-Fi networks are all the rage today, with everyone from Google to Linksys to Securifi introducing new routers that can also be configured as access points in an effort to blanket your home with wireless connectivity. D-Link is taking a different approach. Rather than building small unobtrusive devices that blend into your home décor (in part by hiding their antennas), D-Link’s Covr product line is based on a conventional-looking router with loud-and-proud antennas that pairs with less-obtrusive range extenders.
Unlike a mesh network, where the router and several access point all talk to each other, D-Link’s Covr system will—at launch, at least—operate in a hub-and-spoke topology: Each access point (AP) will establish a connection directly to the router, but APs won’t communicate with each other to form a mesh. The $300 Covr Wi-Fi System (model DKT-883) consists of a 4×4, AC2600, dual-band Wi-Fi router (model number DIR-883) pre-paired with a 2×2, AC1300, dual-band Wi-Fi range extender (model number DAP-1655). D-Link says a future update will enable these components to operate as a true mesh network, but it didn’t provide guidance as to when that would happen.
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