Gifts Under $30 Gifts Under $50 National Cookie Day 'Bones/No Bones' Dog Dies iPhone Emergency SOS Saves Man MyHeritage 'Time Machine' Guardians of the Galaxy 3 Trailer Indiana Jones 5 Trailer
Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?
No, thank you
Accept
Why You Can Trust CNET
Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement | How we test routers

Amazon's New Eero Routers Include One with Wi-Fi 6E Support

Amazon is adding two new systems to the Eero lineup of mesh routers, including a new Pro 6E model that can send signals in the ultrawide 6GHz band.

img-1529
The Eero 6 Plus mesh router three-pack, available now for $299.
Ry Crist/CNET

It's been a busy couple of years for Eero since Amazon acquired the mesh networking brand in 2019. That year saw the release of new, lower-priced systems, followed in 2020 by the introduction of Eero 6 and Eero Pro 6 mesh routers with support for Wi-Fi 6. Now, the company has another new set of mesh systems for the lineup: the Eero 6 Plus and Eero Pro 6E.

As the name suggests, the Eero Pro 6E adds in support for Wi-Fi 6E, which means that it can transmit data through the recently opened, ultrawide 6GHz band. Along with the tri-band build -- a "Pro" upgrade point that gives the system an extra band to use as a dedicated wireless backhaul between the main router and its satellites -- the Eero Pro 6E system also includes an Ethernet WAN port that can support incoming wired speeds as fast as 2.5 gigabits per second (2,500Mbps). That positions the system well for the growing availability of multi-gig internet plans from names like AT&T, Verizon, Frontier, Comcast Xfinity, Google Fiber and others. Amazon is pricing it at $699 for a three-pack, $499 for a two-pack or $299 for a single device.

Shopping for a faster internet speed?

We’ll send you the fastest internet options, so you don’t have to find them.

As for the less expensive Eero 6 Plus system, it doesn't offer support for Wi-Fi 6E and it doesn't include that multi-gig WAN port, but it does open up support for full-width, 160MHz transmissions in the 5GHz band. Eero is billing it as the company's most affordable mesh system built with gigabit connections in mind, and pricing it at $299 for a three-pack or $139 for a single device.

"If you're looking at the 6 Plus versus the Pro 6E, the difference is really gigabit-capable versus gigabit-plus-capable," said Nick Weaver, Eero's founder and CEO. In addition to the Eero Pro 6E's embrace of Wi-Fi 6E and the 6GHz band, Weaver points to the addition of 160MHz channel support in the Eero 6 Plus -- up from 80MHz in the standard Eero 6 -- as a particularly significant step forward.

"It's basically 2x the performance from the same radios, because you've got much, much wider channels to push data across," Weaver said. "Even if you don't have a 160MHz-capable client, you're going to be able to see that improved performance on the 6 Plus just from having faster mesh links."

Now playing: Watch this: Wi-Fi 6 vs. Wi-FI 6E: Here's the difference in three...
2:57

The new Eero 6 Plus and Eero Pro 6E mesh devices are nearly identical in appearance to previous generations.

Ry Crist/CNET

Weaver also pointed out that each of the new Eero systems is fully backward-compatible with previous Eero generations, and made note of new pricing for the previous-gen Eero 6 system. Originally priced at $279 for a three-pack, Weaver tells CNET that Eero is cutting the cost down to $199, or $89 for a single device.

With multiple devices wirelessly relaying traffic through your home, a mesh router is more like a team of routers designed to ensure strong, consistent speeds across larger environments than traditional routers are capable of covering. CNET tests show that upgrading to a mesh router is one of the best upgrades most home networks can make to improve Wi-Fi performance at range, and the market is rich with new options worth considering.

That means that the mesh category is a particularly competitive one these days. Top-tested mesh routers from names like Netgear Orbi, Google Nest and TP-Link Deco currently sit atop CNET's list of recommended systems, and brands like Asus, D-Link, Arris, Linksys and others are making a regular habit of releasing new systems, too. Still, there are only a handful of name-brand three-piece systems with support for Wi-Fi 6 that cost less than the Eero 6 Plus. And despite the higher asking price, the Eero Pro 6E is arguably even more of a value play, as competing three-piece Wi-Fi 6E systems from Linksys Velop and Netgear Orbi cost well over $1,000.

dsc01753

At $699, the Eero Pro 6E system is expensive, but still hundreds less than other three-piece mesh routers with support for Wi-Fi 6E.

Amazon

Eero also points to the smart home as a potential differentiator. All of the latest Eero routers support Alexa voice commands for pausing the Wi-Fi and for other basic network controls, as well as "frustration-free" device setup that lets new gadgets automatically sync with your Wi-Fi and with Alexa, provided you've linked your Eero account with your Amazon account. Like the last generation of devices, the Eero 6 Plus and Eero Pro 6E also include built-in Zigbee radios that let them pair directly with lights, locks, and other compatible gadgets.

There's also Matter, an incoming Wi-Fi-based protocol set to launch later this fall as a universal language for smart home devices. Amazon is one of a number of major names to already throw support behind the standard, and Eero has long included support for Thread, a separate Wi-Fi protocol that Matter will use to help relay signals between devices. 

"I think we're finally hitting the tipping point," Weaver said. "You've got Apple, you've got Google, you've got dozens of other companies all kind of converging on this Matter standard. And, you know, we'll support that fully."

Both of the new mesh routers are available now on Amazon. For our first impressions and speed test results, click to read through the CNET reviews of the Eero 6 Plus and Eero Pro 6E systems.