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Google OnHub: The Wi-Fi Router Gets a Brain


Google Opens a New Era in Wi-Fi Routing, But Is It Everything It’s Cracked Up To Be?

Google’s new OnHub router is impressive. On first glance, it looks impressive. The average router looks like any number of UFO’s from bad 1960’s science fiction film, whereas OnHub looks like an office-friendly coffee thermos. However, OnHub doesn’t stop at looks. It gives users more control over their router than ever before, and uses intelligent software to do things that were previously rather inconvenient on a traditional router. Google’s OnHub is a router with a brain, but is that a good thing?

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The first thing to consider are some of the things it can do. And it can do a lot. With 13 antennas inside, Google OnHub will first make use of one of these antennas to constantly search for optimal signal and minimal interference while the other antennas are actually connecting to the Internet. You heard correctly: OnHub will actually seek out better and better signal for your computer. The Android/Google powered software will also interface with your phone and allow you greater control over device use of bandwidth. If you’re streaming live TV and want more bandwidth to go to watching movies, you can make the changes right from your device. Even more impressively, OnHub will actually figure out the optimal bandwidth you need to make that happen.

That said, what sounds like a very positive feature (password sharing) looks ripe for abuse, and to be honest, it’ll be curious to see how secure WiFi password sharing can be. With OnHub, giving away your password is as easy as the touch of a button. The question will be whether or not OnHub is secure enough to protect your devices in case of the wrong person getting the password, and whether or not OnHub’s brain can be overridden in case it stops working as it should.

Verdict: OnHub is demonstrating some great leaps forward in the field of technology. However, one of the problems of WiFi routing is security– and it will be interesting to see how much more secure a WiFi network connected with OnHub is on average.


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