6 Best WiFi Router for Multiple Devices in 2020 (Reviews and Guide)

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WiFi Router for Multiple Devices

Here’s a guide to save you time and money in your search for the best WiFi router for multiple devices.

Unless you live alone and have less than five devices connected to your WiFi at the same time, you cannot underestimate the power of multi-device connectivity to your wireless network.

Whether you run a small business or you have one child streaming on HD for hours, the other gaming, someone else video conferencing, and other electronics and smart devices connected, you will need to invest in one of the best WiFi routers for multiple devices. You also need this router if you download large files on different devices at the same time.

But having a router that supports multiple devices is not enough: the router needs fortification of sorts. That router must have the power to support that large device capacity with ease, offer excellent range coverage, and good speeds, without fail.

Below, we look at some of the best options you might want to consider. These are high-performance routers with multi-device capacity. And they fall in different price ranges, meaning that there is pretty much something for everyone.

Comparison Table for Best WiFi Routers for Multiple Devices

Here is a quick run-through of the features of the routers reviewed here.

Best WiFi Router for Multiple Devices
Best For
Speed/ Devices Connected
WiFi Protocol
Price
NETGEAR Nighthawk X6 Smart WiFi Router (R8000)
Best Overall
3200Mbps

50 devices

802.11ac

Tri-band

NETGEAR Nighthawk AX12 12-Stream WiFi 6 Router (RAX120)
Best High-Speed Router
6Gbps

30+ devices

802.11ax

Dual-band

TP-Link P9 Deco Powerline Hybrid Mesh WiFi System
– Best Multiple-Device (100+ devices) Mesh Router for Thick Walls
1200Mbps (per unit)

100+ Devices

802.11ac

Tri-band

Google WiFi system, 3-Pack Router Replacement
Simplest Setup with 200+ Device Capacity
1200Mbps/unit

200+ Devices

802.11ac

Dual-band

TP-Link Archer A7 AC1750 Router
Affordable Router
1750Mbps

50+ Devices

802.11ac

Dual-band

 

Best WiFi Router for Multiple Devices: Reviews

  1. NETGEAR Nighthawk X6 Smart WiFi Router (R8000) – Best Overall

NETGEAR Nighthawk X6 Smart WiFi Router (R8000) - AC3200 Tri-band Wireless Speed (up to 3200 Mbps) | Up to 3500 sq ft Coverage & 50 Devices | 4 x 1G Ethernet and 2 USB ports | Armor Security
  • Fast wifi performance: Get up to 3500 sq ft wireless coverage with AC3200 speed (Tri-band up to 600 +...
  • Recommended for up to 50 devices: Reliably stream videos, play games, surf the internet, and connect...

With a device capacity of 50 devices, this Netgear Nighthawk X6 is our best contender for the best WiFi router for multiple devices. It boasts an even larger range coverage of 3500sq/ft., and it has the most interesting design.

Some of the features that make this router one of the best options on the market today include the high maximum throughput of 3200Mbps and its tri-band wireless design, which allows for a larger device capability/ performance. The tri-band radio frequencies feature one 2.4GHz band that operates at 600Mbps and two 5GHz bands, each operating at 1300Mbps. Then you have the four gigabit Ethernet ports that allow for wired connections for your gaming console, gaming PC, multi-player streaming, TV, and computers.

It also comes loaded with advanced technological features like Beamforming+ for focused signals, Dynamic QoS for device prioritization, Smart Connect for easy integration with other smart home devices, and six amplified antennas for a larger range. The 1GHz dual-core processor enhances all the features and functions of this router.

The other winning features of this router include the super-smart parental controls, USB connections (one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0) for file transfers, as well as Netgear Armor security function for network and devices security.

Pros

  • 3200Mbps Max throughput
  • 50 devices capacity
  • Powerful for streaming and gaming
  • Robust system with Beamforming+ antennas
  • Six amplified antennas
  • Ultimate security
  • Tri-band
  • Four Ethernet ports
  • 3500sq/ft. coverage
  • 5-minute setup
  • Device prioritization
  • USB 3.0 and USB 2.0

Cons

  • No MU-MIMO
  • The firmware could be better

View Price on Amazon

  1. NETGEAR Nighthawk AX12 12-Stream WiFi 6 Router (RAX120) – High-Speed Router

NETGEAR Nighthawk AX12 12-Stream WiFi 6 Router (RAX120) - AX6000 Wireless Speed (up to 6Gbps) | Up to 3500 sq ft Coverage & 30+ Devices | Ideal for iPhone 11, Samsung Galaxy S20
  • COMPATIBILITY Works with existing WiFi devices and new WiFi 6 devices like iPhone 11 Galaxy Note 10...
  • 12 SIMULTANEOUS STREAMS Provides more capacity so more devices can use WiFi at the same time

This Netgear router is next on our list as it boasts a large multi-device capacity of at least 30 devices and coverage of 3500sq/ft.

However, it’s winning feature is that in as much as it has a large device capacity, it also boasts super high wireless speeds of 6Gbps. The main reason behind these functions is that this is a WiFi 6 router, which means that you get to enjoy the best of speeds and range coverage.

Its 12-stream design means that the router allows you access to 12 simultaneous streams and more capacity to the connected devices, all using WiFi at the same time. Then you have the four Ethernet ports for wired connections. On top of that, it also boasts two 5/5G Ethernet ports for high performance wired connections.

Then you have its advanced technological features starting from the router’s design from the powerful 64-bit two 2GHz quad-core processors, Beamforming+ for focused WiFi signals, eight amplified antennas for a signal range boost, MU-MIMO for simultaneous uplink as well as downlink multi-device streaming, as well as OFDMA for multi-channel function. Smart Connect allows for easy integration and system control. It works with Alexa.

For USB connections, you have two USB 3.0 ports for ultra-fast file sharing. And security comes from the WPA2 and WPA3 wireless protocols.

It also offers parental controls, guest WiFi access, and advanced protection from cyber threats thanks to Netgear Armor.

Pros

  • 12-Stream capacity
  • Large device capacity
  • MU-MIMO, Beamforming+, OFDMA, and Smart Connect technologies incorporated
  • 6Gbps maximum throughput
  • 64-bit quad-core processor
  • Less congestion
  • 30+ device capacity
  • Lag-free gaming
  • Buffer-free streaming
  • Simple setup and network management
  • Netgear Armor for advanced threat protection

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Dual-band
  • Bulky

View Price on Amazon

  1. TP-Link P9 Deco Powerline Hybrid Mesh WiFi System – Best Multiple-Device (100+ devices) Mesh Router for Thick Walls

TP-Link Deco Powerline Hybrid Mesh WiFi System –Up to 6,000 sq.ft Whole Home Coverage, WiFi Router/Extender Replacement,Signal Through Walls, Seamless Roaming, Parental Controls(Deco P9)
  • JD Power Award ---Highest in customer satisfaction for wireless routers 2017 and 2019
  • Powerline Backhaul: The Powerline Deco P9 adds a third lane for data to travel through, similar to a...

This router lets you deal with two problems once – maneuver issues like spotty wireless connections and signal interference across thick walls. It boasts an extensive coverage of 6,000sq/ft. and given the intelligent WiFi mesh network, among other features, you can have as many devices connected on this mesh router/ network as possible.

It pairs well with Alexa, comes with parental controls, and it boasts a tri-band system with a backhaul AV1000 powerline, which increases the stability and overall performance of the router. It is an AC1200 with a backhaul.

The other features like adaptive path selection, self-healing, and seamless roaming, enhance its capacity and performance. You might also like the parental controls and the fact that you won’t have to worry about buffering, even with its large device capacity of at least 100 devices.

Pros

  • Large 100+ device capacity
  • Powerful mesh router system
  • High-performance backhaul band
  • Tri-band
  • 6000sq/ft. coverage
  • No dead zones
  • Versatile for 4K streaming and gaming
  • Ethernet ports incorporated

Cons

  • Alexa’s integration could be better

View Price on Amazon

  1. Google WiFi system, 3-Pack Router Replacement – Simplest Setup with 200+ Device Capacity

Google WiFi system, 3-Pack - Router Replacement for Whole Home Coverage (NLS-1304-25),White
  • A new type of connected system for seamless wifi coverage throughout your home, helping eliminate dead...
  • ReplACes your current router, and works your modem and internet service. It’s compatible with major...

Whether you are looking for a mesh router for your large house or office, this Google WiFi system will give you exactly what you need, thanks to the large coverage of up to 4500sq/ft. and reliable wireless speeds.

The network assist technology ensures fast connectivity as it selects the clear channels and the fastest bands for use by your devices. It also comes with an app that’s easy to install, setup, and manage – you can pause WiFi access on your kids’ devices.

It is an 802.11ac dual-band router with a maximum throughput of 1200Mbps, TX Beamforming for more focused signals, it’s Bluetooth-smart ready, and it’s powered by a powerful 710MHz quad-core processor with 4GB storage and 512 RAM.

These features work together to ensure the best performance from the router at all times. It also comes with two Gigabit Ethernet ports for wired connections (on each unit), hence 6 Ethernet ports. The units are all powered by USB-C.

Pros

  • Excellent performance
  • Easy setup and management
  • Ease of use
  • Dual-band
  • 200+ device capacity
  • 1200Mbps per unit
  • Ideal for 4K streaming and online gaming
  • Traffic prioritization function
  • Great design

Cons

  • Lower AC rating than expected
  • Limited control over the hardware

View Price on Amazon

  1. TP-Link Archer A7 AC1750 Router – Affordable Router

TP-Link AC1750 Smart WiFi Router - Dual Band Gigabit Wireless Internet Router for Home, Works with Alexa, VPN Server, Parental Control&QoS (Archer A7)
  • JD Power Award ---Highest in customer satisfaction for wireless routers 2017 and 2019
  • Router for wireless internet, works with Alexa, compatible with all WiFi devices, 802.11ac and older

You don’t have to spend most of your savings on a router for its multi-device connectivity, as you can tell from this dual-band router with a capacity for 50 devices.

It boasts high speeds peaking at 1750Mbps, 450Mbps on the 2.4GHz band, and 1300Mbps on the 5GHz band, as well as four Ethernet (gigabit) ports for wired connections and an integrated USB for the best media transfer and sharing.  The three antennas boost its signal range up to 2500sq/ft.

Some of the technologies incorporated into the router include advanced device and bandwidth prioritization thanks to QoS and a powerful CPU for the highest processing speeds.

Pros

  • 50+ capacity
  • High-speed WiFi speeds of 1750Mbps
  • WPA/ WPA2 security/ encryption
  • Works with Alexa
  • Bandwidth prioritization
  • Compatible with TP-Link mesh wireless systems using OneMesh technology
  • Dual-band
  • 4 Ethernet ports
  • Wall-mounting option available

Cons

  • No Beamforming or MU-MIMO

View Price on Amazon


Ultimate Buying Guide for the Best Router for Multiple Devices – Important Considerations

At the end of the day, you want to make sure that everyone in your home has their device(s) connected to WiFi, with the activities they are engaged in not interfering with what anyone else is doing. The last thing you want is the gamer hogging the WiFi and anyone streaming being forced to deal with annoying videos that keep buffering every few minutes.

So, although interference might be one of the factors that you can never get rid of completely, you need to make sure that this isn’t an issue for you and the rest of your office/ household to struggle with every day. For this to happen, you must find and invest in the best of these multi-device routers.

These routers have specific characteristics/ features behind their multi-device system. We look at these features below.

  • Radio Bands

You probably have a gaggle of connected devices throughout your home, from smartphones and other mobile devices to Smart TVs and other smart devices all set up to make your life better. You want to make sure that you enjoy the best wireless connectivity regardless of the device or bandwidth requirements, and one of the important considerations for you to keep in mind is the number of radio bands.

A router worth its salt will, at the very least, feature a dual radio band system running on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies. The 2.4GHz frequency is operational at a lower frequency compared to the 5GHz band, and it boasts a wider range with the capacity to penetrate walls and thicker obstructions on the signals’ path. The 2.4GHz band doesn’t have it all though – you won’t get to enjoy super high-speed connections on this band. The 5GHz band, on the other hand, offers high-speeds and larger bandwidth, albeit at a shorter range.

It’s also worth noting that the 2.4GHz band is always in competition with all other devices in your home that use the same radio frequency, for example, your Bluetooth devices, wireless phones, microwave oven. Even so, this frequency remains the best choice for web surfing and scrolling through social media.

However, when it comes to HD streaming on Netflix, gaming on Xbox Live, or video streaming on Twitch, you’ll need the 5GHz band because it promises more throughout, with very little signal interference expected. With these considerations in mind, you now see why you need the best dual-band routers.

But the dual-band routers are not the only for you to consider. There are tri-band routers on the market today, and these are designed to support the needs of clients who need significantly more bandwidth. A tri-band router will have three radio bands, one operating on the 2.4GHz band, and two on the 5GHz band.

This setup enhances load balancing, which means that it would be possible and easy for you to dedicate one 5GHz band for tasks like torrent downloads and video streaming, and the other 5GHz band reserved for online gaming. The 2.4GHz band will be free for a simple task like browsing since these don’t need much bandwidth. The tri-band routers also make great multi-device routers.

There is a final type of radio band for routers; the 6GHz spectrum. This is the latest radio band for routers on the market, and the FCC only made this version available to the public recently. The 6GHz spectrum promises a great boost in terms of overall network performance.

  • Wireless Protocols/ Technological Features (MU-MIMO, Beamforming, QoS, OFDMA & TWT)

The other important consideration you must bear in mind is the router’s active wireless protocol. By now, you have a general idea of what this means, but if you don’t – just know that the 802.11ac is currently regarded as the industry standard for the best performance and the most reliable wireless protocol. The older protocols are 802.11a/b/g/n, and the 802.11ac wireless routers are backward compatible with the older versions.

Back to present-day wireless routers operating on the 802.11ac protocol. This protocol is designed for maximum data throughput/ data transfer rates of up to 5400Mbps (theoretically), operating on the dual-band system.

What really stands out from these routers is that they are designed for multi-device usage. To make this possible, this wireless standard utilizes MU-MIMO or Multi-User Multiple Input Multiple Output technologies.

This technology makes use of several antennas that send and receive as many as six spatial streams, hence the enhancement of the router’s performance. MU-MIMO makes simultaneous multi-device streaming – rather than sequential multi-device streaming; thanks to the downstream MU-MIMO function.

The other technological feature supported by this protocol is beamforming, which is the tech that enhances the performance of the router by sending focused WiFi signals to clients directly, instead of the expected broadcast of the wireless signals throughout space.

Automatic band steering is the other feature you will find in these 802.11ac routers. This function makes it possible for the router to select the best radio frequency for use by a device based on the bandwidth availability, network traffic, as well as the range. 802.11ac routers are good multi-device routers.

The next protocol, now the newest wireless router protocol, is the 802.11ax wireless protocol. It’s also called WiFi 6, and it’s the latest wireless standard boasting a very high level of performance, in terms of the internet speeds being the highest possible, and the device capacity being up to 4x larger than what’s offered by 802.11ac router. These routers boast a high throughput speed of up to 4.8Gbps, they experience reduced congestion, and offer better range performance, all thanks to the technological features incorporated into this wireless standard.

Technologies in WiFi 6 routers include OFDMA or Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiple Access that increases the router’s maximum throughput by breaking down the WiFi channels into many more sub-channels, hence use of one channel by as many as 30 users. The other technological feature is Target Wake Time (TWT), a feature that will reduce power consumption across your devices by automatically allowing these devices to determine usage and wake/ sleep times.

Note that the WiFi 6 systems offer uplink and downlink MU-MIMO streaming functions for the best performance. Note that while both AC and AX protocols support MU-MIMO, 802.11ac features the downlink MU-MIMO option only.

The other function incorporated into these routers is the QoS (Quality of Service), a feature that offers device prioritization, hence the best multi-device connectivity. The 802.11ax protocol is backward compatible with 802.11a/b/g/n/ac protocols.

The other features that you must take into consideration in your search are as follows:

  • Gigabit Ethernet ports – for enhanced multi-device capabilities, look for a router with at least four Ethernet ports. You need these ports for wired connections for your gaming PC, gaming console, desktop, home automation hubs, as well as NAS drives.
  • Link Aggregation – this means the router allows the use of two gigabit Ethernet LAN ports into one high-speed LAN/ Ethernet port with speeds of up to 2Gbps. This system also works as a fail-safe such that if one port is down, you will have the other to use. It allows for load balancing of network traffic.
  • USBPorts – the router must have at least one USB port, preferably a USB 3.0 or one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0.
  • Antennas – the best antennas are removable/ flexible, and you can buy the high-gain antennas as replacements for an overall boost in performance.
  • Control, Access, and Security – Look for routers with parental controls, guest WiFi access options, firewalls, WPA/2/3, VPN support, Antivirus/ Antimalware.
  • Processor power – this is the power that will dive the overall performance of the router.

FAQs

What is a router’s throughput? How do I improve it?

A router’s throughput represents the average rate of successful data delivery over a network. Think of it as the speed of data delivery within a network. For increased throughput, consider getting a router with a larger memory and processor power.

What is the difference between Wireless network security and VPN encryption?

Unlike wireless network security, VPN encryption protects your entire network, even when you leave the network open. But leaving a wireless network open when using the wireless network security will leave your network vulnerable and open to attacks.

Why invest in WiFi 6?

It boasts higher throughput, it’s faster than all other standards, backward-compatible, less congested, and it has a bigger client capacity.


Conclusion

Thanks to multiple antennas, powerful processors, and the most advanced technologies, the routers above are able to offer multi-device usage, effortlessly. The five routers reviewed are some of the best options on the market today, and as you can see, there are budget-friendly and high-end options to match your needs accordingly.

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