Ugly, bug-looking routers can get away with antennas, but you don’t need a plastic Wi-Fi cactus in the middle of your house to get a good signal. In fact, you’re better off without one. Mesh systems can more effectively wrap your home in a warm Wi-Fi blanket, but they’re usually expensive — a “cheap” system can cost $150 on sale. So you can imagine how incredulous we were when Vilo announced a $20-per-node mesh Wi-Fi solution. And, after more than four months of testing, I can’t help but recommend it.
Vilo provides mesh-based Wi-Fi with AC1200 speeds at a great price. But after four months of testing, we can’t help but recommend it.
- Mesh Wi-Fi
- $20-28 per node
- App based management
- Wireless or wired backhaul
- AC1200 speed
- range: 1,500 sq ft per node
- Wi-Fi Bands: Double band
- Ethernet Ports: 3 per node (with caveats)
- Supported standards: 802.11 1/b/g/n/ac (ie Wi-Fi 5), dual-band
- Speed: AC1200 (up to 300Mbps at 2.4GHz, 867 Mbps at 5GHz)
- security: WPA 2
- Chipset/Memory: 999MHz MIPS, 128MB RAM and 16MB neither flash
- App Requirements: Android 8.0 or later, or iOS 9.0 or later
- Dimensions: 70 x 70 x 150.6mm, 319g (per node)
- Miscellaneous: “4 internal antennas,” MU-MIMO, beamforming, proactive band steering
- Disturbingly cheap price.
- Ridiculously easy setup process
- Good enough speed for most.
- There aren’t many advanced networking options.
- Wi-Fi calls the movement between nodes scramble.
Buy this product.
Design, hardware, what’s in the box.
Vilo’s mesh Wi-Fi system has neither a product name nor a design. It’s a simple plastic rectangular prism with rounded edges, hidden vents and a logo on top. It doesn’t have the flashy “Extreme” look that targets high-end routers that gamers can’t seem to avoid, but it’s not quite as chic as Google’s curved Nest Wi-Fi. Still, it should blend in easily with other hardware in your office, on a desk, or on top of a shelf.
There are no obtrusive lights on the front, just a status indicator and a “mesh” button (as Vilo’s documentation calls it) that you’ll never touch unless you need to add a new node to the network. don’t be That status light is just bright enough to be seen in full daylight but small enough to be unnoticeable at night. (No obnoxious blue halo emanating from the back of your computer if you’re working in the dark.) The light flashes red when there’s a problem, and blue if the wireless signal is weak or weak…