Netgear Debuts New 2-in-1 Orbi Modem Router System Starting at $300

Discussion in 'Mac Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, May 8, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Netgear today announced the "Orbi Tri-Band Wi-Fi Cable Modem Router System," an all-new 2-in-1 device designed to replace an existing cable modem and router setup. The system covers up to 4,000 square feet, and sold-separately Orbi Satellites can expand coverage by an additional 2,000 square feet each.

    The new Orbi is compatible with all major cable internet service providers, and Netgear pointed out that it's designed to work "right out of the box" for Xfinity, Spectrum, Cox, and more. This is Orbi's first product that combines its Wi-Fi mesh networking abilities with a modem.


    If users don't own their modem, many ISPs offer leases with rental costs at around $10/month added on top of the cost of an internet bill. Because of this, Netgear is pitching the new Orbi as a cost-saving measure for users to replace their existing products "and save up to $120 per year." The new Orbi starts at $299.99.
    On the modem side of things, the Orbi integrates a DOCSIS 3.0 CableLabs-certified modem with 32x8 channel bonding and download speeds of up to 1.4 Gbps. Netgear said the device's router supports high-performance Wi-Fi up to 2.2 Gbps; multi-user multiple-input, multiple-output technology; and includes a quad-core processor for better 4K video streaming.

    Orbi also has "Smart Connect Technology" that chooses the best Wi-Fi band for each device on a network, avoiding interference and optimizing network performance, while Beamforming+ improves speed and range for 2.4 and 5 GHz devices. The Orbi itself includes four Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports so that users can attach wired devices and ensure even faster file transfers and reliable connections.

    The system uses a connected iOS app that lets users set up the device, manage their network, update software, and other features. Netgear said that Orbi is compatible with voice commands for Alexa and Google Assistant, but didn't mention Siri support.

    The Orbi Tri-Band Wi-Fi Cable Modem Router will be available to purchase soon for $299.99, while a bundle with one Orbi satellite runs for $399.99.

    Article Link: Netgear Debuts New 2-in-1 Orbi Modem Router System Starting at $300
  2. phillytim macrumors 65816


    Aug 12, 2011
    Philadelphia, PA
    Seriously? A premium router update and it's still stuck in the DOCSIS 3.0 age, rather than the blooming 3.1?
  3. Canezmd macrumors member

    Feb 6, 2011
  4. OneBagTravel macrumors 6502


    Oct 18, 2013
    I've never had good luck with the router/modem combo devices.
  5. urtules macrumors regular


    Jul 30, 2010
    Although they try to copy Apple with white colour and rounded shape, it still looks clunky and assimetrical. The worst is 4! led lights. PC manufacturers can’t say no to anything.
  6. iMerik macrumors 6502a

    May 3, 2011
    Upper Midwest
    I'd love to understand the decision-making process here. Honestly, why might they go 3.0 instead of supporting the latest 3.1 and ensuring a larger scope of potential buyers?
  7. L-U-R-C-H macrumors regular


    Mar 3, 2007
    Des Moines, Iowa
    Also still not able to plug in an external hard drive to use with Time Machine backups?
  8. djc6, May 8, 2018
    Last edited: May 8, 2018

    djc6 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 11, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    I really enjoy my Orbi RBK53 three pack from Costco, purchased November 2017 - no problems all this time.

    However, the only DOCSIS 3.0 32x8 chipset I'm aware of is the doomed Intel Puma 6 with unresolved latency, jitter and security issues for over a year. All this time Intel hasn't been able to resolve any of these issues! See
  9. dontwalkhand macrumors 601


    Jul 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    TIL, there’s a whole website shaming cable modems.
  10. FocusAndEarnIt macrumors 601


    May 29, 2005
    The LED lights only light up when there is an issue. I upgraded to an Orbi ran network when I just couldn't take the sub-par performance of my Time Capsule and AirPort Extreme extenders. The Orbi system is seriously an incredible router. I put my Time Capsule in bridge mode, so I still have its backup function. Other than an easy set up with AirPort devices, I don't miss them at all.
  11. Bob Zimmerman macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2015
    I like that my telco gives me the option of an Ethernet handoff from their ONT. No DOCSIS, DSL, or other nonsense, just ordinary 802.3-2008. Next, I need to figure out what downlink and uplink wavelengths they use and get a transceiver to stick straight in my router so I can cut their ONT out entirely.
  12. friedmud macrumors 65816

    Jul 11, 2008
    Love my Orbi system... but I paired it with Netgear's CM1000 DOCSIS 3.1 modem.

    Not really sure why they would release this with DOCSIS 3.0. Yes, most people don't have 3.1 _right now_... but if I'm spending hundreds of dollars on a router I want some future proofness!
  13. Defthand macrumors 6502a

    Sep 1, 2010
    Does no one find it odd that Apple is abandoning their wifi router line altogether—presumably because it is no longer lucrative—yet alternative manufacturers are now promoting wifi solutions that are even more expensive than Apple’s?

    I can imagine Apple’s disincentives. ISP’s provide wireless modems/routers. And cellular will eventually replace home wifi for some people.
  14. applejacks14 macrumors newbie


    May 8, 2018

    oooohhhh...blinky lights.
  15. groovyd macrumors 65816


    Jun 24, 2013
    Guessing that the additional bandwidth 3.1 provides is not available over the current wifi standard until '802.11 ax' comes out?
  16. apolloa macrumors G4

    Oct 21, 2008
    Time, because it rules EVERYTHING!
    I got the original Orbi system in a cupboard, it didn’t play well with all my devices and they are so big and bulky, I now use Google WiFi and it makes Orbi fell like something from the Stone Age, sure it doesn’t perform as well but it’s so easy to use and setup and the app on my iPhone works great, it’s connected to a decent Draytek VDSL modem and has been working great! And it works with all my kit too.
    I should get on and sell my Orbi on eBay.
  17. CJM macrumors 65816


    May 7, 2005
    $300? Router makers are really going for that affluenza market aren’t they.
  18. liberte1776 macrumors regular

    Apr 3, 2014
    It’s 2018! Ridiculous that it’s not DOCSIS 3.1!
    --- Post Merged, May 8, 2018 ---
    Which telco?
  19. friedmud, May 8, 2018
    Last edited: May 8, 2018

    friedmud macrumors 65816

    Jul 11, 2008

    Orbi makes Google Wifi look like it's from the stone ages. Google Wifi needs to be updated:

    1. Orbi is Tri-band: Google Wifi is dual-band
    2. Orbi has a dedicated backhaul channel between satellites so there's no slowdown with multiple hops: Google Wifi slows down significantly when connected to a satellite
    3. Orbi has MU-MIMO: Google Wifi doesn't
    4. Orbi does 866Mbps to clients: Google Wifi does only 600Mbps
    5. Orbi does 1733Mbps to satellites: Goole Wifi does 600Mbps (shared with clients)
    6. Orbi base has 3 Gigabit ports on the base: Google Wifi has 1
    7. Orbi satellites have 4 Gigabit ports: Google Wifi has 1
    8. Orbi has outdoor satellites: Google Wifi doesn't.

    Orbi is way beyond Google Wifi. Ok - so you like Google Wifi's app better... how often are you in it though? Personally, I just setup my network and then it runs.
  20. justperry macrumors G3


    Aug 10, 2007
    In the core of a black hole.

    Globally or just the U.S., I ask this since there are many non US readers here.
  21. friedmud macrumors 65816

    Jul 11, 2008
    Nope - Orbi does AC3000... which "theoretically" can go to ~3Gbps (if you max out all bands simultaneously). That's well beyond DOCSIS 3.0. 3.1 can currently go to 10Gbps.

    In a more "typical" usage (only using the 5GHz bands)... two Orbi's (base and satellite) can serve up ~1.7Gbps to two clients (one connected to each Orbi). That's still beyond DOCSIS 3.0.

    Then there is the fact that even at DOCSIS 3.0 speeds DOCSIS 3.1 is much more efficient (both bandwidth and energy wise)... so many cable systems are going to switch to 3.1 just for that alone...
  22. euvnairb macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2010
    Goleta, CA
    I would be interested in this, but it probably won't work with my internet-based phone service. My phone service with COX forces me to use their modem, but the modem is free as I have a bundle. And yes, I still use/need a home phone.
  23. apolloa macrumors G4

    Oct 21, 2008
    Time, because it rules EVERYTHING!
    Actually google WiFi does have MIMO, and wireless AC and is better then Orbi and is a modern take in WiFi and works with all my kit, it’s not some old clunky web interface that needs constant updates to work with your kit.
    As for the gigabit ports, what’s the point in a MESH wireless network if your going to plug things in? Because you may as well use homepligs at that point which are far better performing.

    Sorry, but IMO Google WFi is much better, and the pucks aren’t overweight monolithic’s that fall over with the slightest knock. And I haven’t noticed a single drop in my wireless performance over the Orbis either.
  24. urtules, May 8, 2018
    Last edited: May 9, 2018

    urtules macrumors regular


    Jul 30, 2010
    You can’t defend bad design by saying “that’s hidden most of the time.” Good design demands perfection of shape and form everywhere. On front, back and inside. Achving same functionality with less is superior design. One light is enough to display:
    - on/off state
    - loading state
    - error state

    That’s possible with correctly timed blinking (to match with human breath patterns) and colours.

    It’s not fair compare this router with Airport because Airport uses old technology. Appropriate comparison here is other mesh routers.
  25. FocusAndEarnIt macrumors 601


    May 29, 2005
    I wasn't directly comparing them, other than stating the fact that the AirPort's wireless capacity was subpar in several homes and apartments I've lived in. In regards to the lights, I personally hated the constantly on green light (ugly IMO) that was on the Time Capsule. So much so I covered it up with white tape and positioned the Time Capsule in a way that it couldn't be seen, but still had best chance of wireless coverage. The Orbi's lights never go on (maybe once since I've owned it, which was due to Comcast outage), and thus are virtually never seen, which allows it to blend much more seamlessly in the house.

    It's a matter of preference.

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