Create a reliable internet connection throughout your home with this Google Wi-Fi system. The convenient package of three connectivity points effortlessly covers even large homes up to 4,500 square feet. This Google Wi-Fi system eliminates uneven bandwidth usage among multiple devices, including cellphones and tablets, for an unimpeded connection that doesn't lag behind.
Google Wifi comes in a pack of three to put in different rooms so you can stream in the living room or game in the playroom without a battle for bandwidth. And provides up to 4,500 sq. ft. of coverage.
Compatible with 802.11ac
Backward compatible with 802.11a/b/g/n networks, so you can easily upgrade.
Up to 1.2 Gbps data transfer speed
For fast, efficient operation.
TX Beamforming technology
Focuses signals directly to compatible wireless devices to help ensure dependable connectivity.
Wi-Fi protected access
Protects your network against hackers and eavesdroppers.
2 Gigabit Ethernet ports
Offer a high-speed wired network connection and can be configured as WAN or LAN.
Manage your family's Internet use
Keep track of your family's screen time - pause the Internet on your kids' devices at bedtime or during homework hours.
Google Wifi app
Makes it simple to share your password with guests and prioritize devices on your network. (Download required)
Super Easy Setup & Fast
Posted by: SoCalPaul from: Los Angeles, CA on
Units are off white, pretty small with a rubber strip around the bottom to keep them from sliding
around, so they stay put where you put them. Activity light is in a small slot in the middle, white
means your network is up and running. If you have an issue they'll change color to let you know.
You can change the brightness of the lights or turn them off completely if you wish. They also
have a small indentation on the bottom for attached cables so the unit sits flat on the surface
wherever you decide to put it.
Each unit has a USB C connector for power and they plug directly into a socket, no power bricks
or extra boxes are used. Each unit has only two ethernet ports available and the one used as
the main unit you're using one to connect to your modem so only one is available to connect
additional devices. If you need more than one I just hooked up a five port switch and it was
easily solved. On the others you're using as mesh access points you can use both if needed or
add a switch if you have that many devices.
Setup is crazy easy. Download the Google Wifi app from either Google Play or the App Store.
All the units are the same so just pick one to use as the main router, connect the power cable
and the provided Ethernet cable and fire up the Google Wifi app. You can use pretty much
any phone or tablet, either Android or IOS to do the setup.
Sign into your Google account or set one up if you don't have one, scan the QR code on the
bottom of the unit, set up a network SSID and a password and you're good to go. The app
already knows you have two additional units so your next step is pretty much plug them in
and the app does the rest of the setup by itself. Couples of minutes later your mesh Wifi system
is ready to go. I needed to move one of them a couple of feet to get a better connection back to
the base unit but that was it. The app will tell you how strong the connection is between the
mesh points and the router so it's really easy to see if you need to make any adjustments.
Performance from the router unit is comparable to any other router I've used with max
throughput (ISP speed is 350/25) within about 20 Feet from the base unit. If you have a small
apartment one unit will cover it nicely with no dead spots. I have the base unit upstairs and the
mesh units downstairs on opposite sides of the house (2500 sq. ft.). No dead spots I can find
and the mesh units provide a really strong, fast signal with low latency. Speed on the two mesh
units are around 160/25, which is quite usable for gaming, 4K video, etc.
For comparison I've used a recently released super high end traditional router with eight
antennas and a different system that looks like a couple of giant air fresheners and Google Wifi
compares very favorably to both of them for a lot less money.
The entire system is controlled by the Wifi app, includes pretty much any info you could need
about signal strength, performance, etc. If you're a tech geek who likes to tweak their network
settings you may be disappointed, but if you want a solid easy to setup and maintain mesh wifi
system then this is a solid choice and highly recommended.
138 out of 146 found this review helpful.
Posted by: Samcav from: on
Have 4500 sq ft house...been fighting wifi issues for years. Was about to pull the plug on Eero, but saw this coming in $200 less. Received today, took about 15 min to set up (mostly unpacking), spread out in three random places, and have full strong wifi in whole house, could not find a spot where I don't get full bars. Can't compare it to Eero, but I am very impressed with the Google wifi, and glad I saved $200.
72 out of 84 found this review helpful.
Good but serious shortcomings for advanced network
Posted by: LuvMySony from: Fairport, NY on
Setup of 3 wifi points was relatively painless and I found my apple devices to have very good connectivity throughout my whole house. I did find that the allowable distance between the wifi points in my house was less than what I expected. The documentation says that they should be no more than two rooms apart. The units were within two rooms but maybe my rooms are bigger than normal or my walls block more signal than normal.
I have an established network with IP cameras, gaming devices, storage devices and smart TV's, phones, tablets and laptops with many fixed IP addresses and port forwarding configurations. Whenever I have changed routers before, I simply configured the new router with the same IP address range as the old router and set up the port forwarding and I was back in business with minor device rebooting sometimes.
The major problem that I ran into with Google Wi-Fi is that you can not change the LAN IP address. It is hard configured to 192.168.86.x. This is a serious limitation that would make it very painful to convert my network over completely to the Google Wi-Fi mesh. I mechanism for setting up static IP addresses on your LAN also appears to be awkward. You need to connect the device to the network and then pick it from a list in the app to tell Google Wi-Fi to reserve it.
Finally, the Google Wi-Fi app only runs on phones. I found that managing my network only from my phone was less than ideal.
Bottom line is that it is more geared toward the novice user that needs better Wi-Fi coverage in their house. Any advanced users with more than just basic Wi-Fi requirements will be disappointed.
75 out of 96 found this review helpful.
It works, but...
Posted by: Jules from: on
This wifi system well addresses one or two important issues. First; there is no question that this Mesh network fixes dead spots and dropout zones. Second: it is simple to set up and requires that the user not have a hand in configuration. That is a thing I'm not too comfortable with, not least because I have run into a problem that I can't seem to find a way out of without technical assistance, which isn't readily available.
The packaging this system comes in is minimalist in style which directly reflects the relationship the user has with this device. I have to be honest - I love the smell of some plastic/electronic products when they are new - not unlike the "new car smell" - and I took a couple sniffs of this before getting down to business. There aren't too many ways to mess up getting the first unit plugged in and set up because you just pick one - any one - out of the box. Then simply open up the Google Wifi app and follow the steps: plug the modem in (this one will be the "primary point"), power it up, scan the code on the bottom, enter the information asked for, and wait until it is registered. Then place the next (a "mesh point"), power it up, and let the app find it, and do the third. You'll be prompted to test the network around this time. That's all there is to getting it up and running. All of my devices connected fine. The app controls all settings and it is particularly nice that each point is controlled separately. Each point's light can be dimmed or be made brighter and can be restarted independently of the others, and can be moved/removed through the app.
My problem is one that I can't identify - there is a persistent red light on the primary that indicates something is not right. I went through a complete reset with the same result. I've attempted to contact their tech help via email but no joy so far (about 10 hours). My network isn't quite as speedy as with my previous router, but it does work albeit with some dropped wifi (about 5 times now - never with my previous router). Also, I'm not accustomed to having no web interface and so few available settings, and this router runs the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz bands together so you can't choose which one you want for your devices - it is chosen for you. You can find which one each device is using within the app but that was not a nice surprise. At least there is a guest network available, and some basic IP, DNS, etc settings.
Pros: simple to set up; multiple points provide robust coverage for a space underserved by a single wifi point; WPA2-PSK encryption and built-in TPM; attractive and smells good :); independent controls for each point; decent length of power cord
Cons: this system is meant to operate on its own for the most part - not the right product for those who want or need to tinker and configure; no web interface; solutions to problems can seem frustratingly out of reach; no usb port; only 1 available LAN port on the primary point
Summary: if you have some bucks and hate messing around in the guts of your tech products, and if you like the aesthetics of this, and especially if you have a relatively large area or several rooms to cover with wifi, then I'd for sure recommend looking at this Google Wifi network. My 4 stars - "good but not great" - are a net value of positives and negatives with coverage and aesthetics weighted heavily. If I ever get my "red light" problem worked out in my favor it might be a "great" product.
36 out of 45 found this review helpful.
Easy setup and strong connection!
Posted by: JamexRZ from: on
Large box! It was easy to setup using the Google wifi app (make sure you download it before!). I setup the 3 points in 3 areas of my house. One on the living room (main one connected to my comcast modem), the 2nd on a main hallway that connects to my rooms and the 3rd one on the room the farthest from the main one. I get full solid bars on all my devices connected! Some pros and cons for ease TLDR:
+Very sleek looking, the light can be dimmed on each point.
+Easy to setup, recognized my comcast modem right away.
+Each point has an ethernet port so you can connect devices to them via wire (I have my PS4 and PC on a couple of them, since the PS4's wifi sucks).
+You can manage all your network and points easily with the Google wifi app, even remotely as long as you have data on your phone or tablet (can be ios or android).
+You can setup family hours and turn off the internet, or limit it (in example, dinner time, kids homework time etc).
-Not IPv6 capable. I have emailed Google about them enabling this, will update when they response, but being 2016 should be a standard.
-Lacks some power options for power users, like setting a DMZ etc (same, I have emailed Google about this).
-I wish it had a web interface, to be honest I have not explored this much, but if it may be a feature, its very hidden as there is no mention of it anywhere.
26 out of 32 found this review helpful.
In case you have trouble
Posted by: jcinoc from: on
install with the app is super easy- unless- something goes wrong. Then it's maddening because you can't see what's happening and you may not have the internet. I had to reset the 2 mesh wifi units- and to do that- UNPLUG them, press and hold the button, PLUG THEM BACK IN, wait 15 seconds, then release the button, and WAIT 5 minutes until they flash blue again. It'll take 5 minutes. The super friendly app will have timed out by then but you go go back to add wifi unit.
14 out of 16 found this review helpful.
Posted by: Grimmy77 from: on
I was loving this Wi-fi system until February 23rd. This was so easy to get up and running. It checked my work and told me that I had done well. Five stars! My only complaint was that it doesn't have a hole to hang it on the wall. Then it stopped working. I sent an e-mail to Google and was told that Google's server had a problem and screwed up people's wi-fi. Why is my wi-fi so deeply I nterconnected with Google's server? If Google gets hacked will my wi-fi be compromised? How much information is Google compiling about my internet use? I've gone from loving it to not trusting it! I now would not recommend buying this.
16 out of 21 found this review helpful.
Posted by: AlphaTech from: on
I was looking to change the wireless set up in my house, i have been looking for better coverage, looked at other wireless systems and this one stood out. Google generally makes great items so i gave this a try and I love it. I did not notice any slow downs on my internet speed i go up to 100Mbs plus download and 10Mbs plus uploads, not sure whats the most Mbs this is capable of running but one day when gigabyte speed is available in my area i will be happy to try it out. One thing i would have liked to see is some USB ports for external memory, or that it could be mounted to the wall.
Pros: compact, Light is adjustable you can use as a night light, no lag on speed, automatically selects the best channel for speed
Cons: No USB connection for external memory for home network, no way to mount to the wall
7 out of 7 found this review helpful.
Great Mesh Wi-Fi Solution, But Not Without Faults
Posted by: Panther68 from: SF Bay Area on
NOT a TRUE mesh Wi-Fi system. Does this mean don’t consider Google Wi-Fi? Hardly. For some, it’s an excellent choice…maybe their best choice.
UNBOXING, AND INITIAL IMPRESSIONS:
Excellent job in the packaging design, Google. Not even Apple could have come up with packaging as elegant as this. The box isn’t just “nice looking”…it’s top-quality, with a hint of Japanese influence. Upon opening the box, you find 3 Google Wi-Fi units in near-perfect presentation, with each unit appearing to be high quality. They are compact, & can easily be placed where they will not be overly noticed. Under the tray, there are 3 identical boxes, with each box containing a white power cord/adapter. The middle box also contains a white, flat, 6ft Ethernet cable. The power cord/adapters also have a unique design, almost Apple-esque, but better looking. The instruction sheet is very simple, explaining everything with 2 diagrams, and very few words.
Setup is a breeze, requiring only plugging the power cord into the chosen primary unit & wall outlet, plugging the Ethernet cable into the router’s WAN port, & plugging the opposite end into the router. Configuring the primary unit (henceforth “router”) is as simple as installing the app (Google Play, or Apple App stores), opening the app, making sure your Bluetooth is turned on, and scanning the QR code on the bottom of each node. From there, you select your SSID & password, the router automatically configures itself, & downloads/installs any available firmware update. I estimate it should take approximately 10-14 minutes to set up & configure a 3-unit system. In testing, I ran multiple speed tests & data transfer tests. For each type, I first ran the “current” router tests, followed by the Google Wi-Fi tests. So as to not use too much space, I’ll only reference results.
SPEED & SIGNAL STRENGTH TESTS:
To begin, I set up only a single node to compare against my current router (brand A$^s). After running several speed tests on both 2.4GHz & 5GHz bands, I determined both routers operate almost equally, with download speeds of 89-92Mbps, and uploads of 6.5-7.5Mbps. After speed tests, I moved to signal strength tests, checking signal strengths on both bands. As with the speed tests, signal strengths proved approximately equal. Interestingly, while it’s normal for signal strength to decrease as distance and/or number of walls increases, the percentage of signal decrease was not equal. On the 2.4GHz bands, my “current” router was marginally better at the closer distances, but as distance increased, signal strengths became virtually equal. For the 5GHz band, the results were the opposite. At closer distances, Google Wi-Fi produced slightly stronger 5GHz signals, but at greater distances, Google Wi-Fi had the greater signal strength loss.
To test Google Wi-Fi’s “mesh” ability, I added a second unit, to the far opposite exterior corner of the condo. To compare signal strengths, I also connected a repeater to my “current” router (same manufacturer as router), in the same location as the 2nd Google Wi-Fi node. Signal strengths on both the 2.4GHz & 5GHz bands were relatively consistant.
DATA TRANSFER TESTS:
A total of 15 data transfer tests were conducted, & internet speeds were not affected, as the internet provider connection is the true “bottleneck”. For each (Google Wi-Fi, plus my “current” router), data transfer tests were conducted in 3 ways, all with a 1.01GB file. First, between two laptops. Second, from a network-connected drive to my laptop. Third, from my laptop to the network drive. The first 6 tests (3 per router/manufacturer) were done while connected only to the router, with the laptops & network drive in living room. The remaining 9 tests were done with the ‘controlling’ laptop in the back bedroom, and the other laptop & network drive in the living room…“controlling” laptop connected to the repeater/node, and the 2nd laptop & network drive connected to the router. 6 involved a 2-node Google Wi-Fi mesh against my “current” router, while 3 involved my “current” router plus the repeater.
For the first 6 tests, the results were close, as expected. Moving to the 2-node mesh vs router-only configuration, my “current” router won (also as expected), although by a somewhat narrow margin. I expected the Google Wi-Fi’s data transfer rate to be half, but it was much better. I won’t spoil the fun, but kudos to Google, as I was extremely surprised. While I fully expected my “current” router-repeater configuration to cut data transfer speeds in half, or close to it, the results of the 2-node Google Wi-Fi were unexpected. While my “current” router-repeater configuration preformed far better than expected (data transfer speed degraded approximately 35%), the 2-node Google Wi-Fi configuration performed even better (data transfer speed degraded approximately 25%). What Google Wi-Fi lacks in advanced features, it makes up for in data transfer speeds.
There is one point of interest (not “good”, but not “bad”) I discovered while testing. Google Wi-Fi automatically selects which band (2.4GHz or 5GHz) it connects to…there’s NO ability to manually select your band. Also, with the app, you have no way of knowing which band your devices (computers, phones, tablets, etc) are connected to. Through the device, you might be able to determine this, but through the app, you can’t. For devices with ability to connect via both bands, I assume they connects to the 5GHz band when in close proximity of a Google Wi-Fi node, and when signal strength degrades, it probably automatically switches to the 2.4GHz band. Additionally, Google Wi-Fi automatically switches channels, based on whatever channels have the lowest congestion. As with Google Wi-Fi’s inability to manually select 2.4GHz or 5GHz, there’s also no ability to manually select the channel.
To use Google Wi-Fi, you need a Google account (ie. Gmail address). According to Google, Google Wi-Fi doesn’t collect user activity data…only network, hardware, and app-related information. You do have the ability to turn this off in the setting’s ‘Privacy’ section. As a constant connection with Google is required, this could be a ‘deal breaker’ for some. However, it should be noted that Google’s “mesh network system” is not the only hardware requiring this. Of the other two well-known mesh networking hardware manufacturers, one has an identical requirement. Additionally, there’s no web browser interface. An Android/iOS app is needed to set-up Google Wi-Fi, and to configure & maintain Google Wi-Fi. This is, again, a ‘deal breaker’ for some…and an advantage for others. Personally, I’ve found this to be a considerable advantage.
THE GOOD: Ease of setting up
Ease of configuring
Ease of maintaining
Modular design (can handle up to six units, up to a 10,500sf house (by my estimates))
Inexpensive (comparted to other mesh Wi-Fi systems)
THE BAD: Few advanced/customizable features (this could change in future updates)
No DDNS or VPN ability
Port forwarding, and DHCP, are difficult to configure
THE UGLY: No MAC filtering (this could change in future updates)
No switch, limited to single physically-connected network device (unless external switch is added)
Is Google Wi-Fi for you? It depends on your technical expertise, how much security you need, & how much network control you want. If you live in an apartment/small condo, then the answer is probably “No”. For the same $129 price of a single Google Wi-Fi unit, you can get a router with more advanced features. If you live in a house/large condo, the answer is complicated. For power users, Google Wi-Fi will NOT meet your needs. If you’re an “average” consumer wanting/needing a mesh network, but want advanced features (ie. MAC filtering), until Google adds these features (if Google adds them), the answer is still “No”.
However…”good news” time…for the average consumer needing a mesh Wi-Fi system, who doesn’t need MAC filtering, DDNS, VPN, etc, Google Wi-Fi might be your BEST choice. You’re NOT going to find a more affordable mesh Wi-Fi system. You’re NOT going to find another home networking system that’s easier to set up, or configure. You’re NOT going to find home networking equipment that’s easier to maintain. Simply put, if I were shopping for a mesh network system for family/friends, I knew they had a large area-of-coverage need, & I knew they didn’t need MAC filtering, VPN, DDNS, etc, Google Wi-Fi would be the ONLY system I’d consider for them.
Disclaimer: This product was provided free, or at reduced cost, for the purpose of reviewing the product. Nevertheless, the above review, be it positive, negative, or somewhere in-between, is a 100% honest review, and the price paid played absolutely no part in my review.
6 out of 6 found this review helpful.
Not ready for primetime use
Posted by: Ryan from: on
Looks good, easy to set up, pretty app., Easy to set time-of-day restrictions, mesh networking, can plug other devices directly into one of the remote units. Tech support is friendly.
Must use the app to configure the network, you can't use a PC for setup - this isn't a huge deal, but a bit of a change if you are used to advanced set up options.
The main issue, and why I can't recommend this system to anyone, is Google's update process...
You have no control over firmware updates. The unit will update when Google pushes an update. You have no notification, and no way to block or postpone the update. This means that your network could go down at an inopportune time.
If there is an issue with the firmware, there is no way to roll it back; you are left waiting for Google to push another update.
This is the main issue here... there was an update at the end of March that caused numerous people to have issues with their main Google Wifi unit locking up and changing to a solid blue light. (https://groups.google.com/a/googleproductforums.com/d/msgid/GoogleWifi/b3d79044-fa92-4218-837d-42ae0662c594%40googleproductforums.com)
After receiving the update, every few hours to every few days the main unit will change to a solid blue light and all wireless and wired networking will fail until you power-cycle the main unit. A factory reset does not fix this. Google as acknowledged that there is an issue, but they don't have a fix yet.
I understand that things might go wrong with an update, but the fact that you can't undo it, or get a quick fix is unacceptable. Since there is no way to block or roll-back an update, you are left stuck and waiting for Google to fix it.
For me this resulted in 35 lockups and multiple tech support calls/emails over a 10-day period before I finally gave up and replaced the unit with a different router.
Another issue people have seen with this system: https://support.google.com/wifi/answer/7335595?hl=en - If the Google Accounts engine is down, your router might randomly reset and all configuration is lost.
I really wanted this system to be good, but in practice it has been a major headache. At this point I would not recommend Google Wifi to anyone, there are much more robust/stable options out there. If Google changes this update process and allows you to roll-back it wouldn't be so bad, but as is, it's simply not worth it.