What are some reasons to avoid an Amazon eero? The eero has made quite a splash in the last few years. The eero and other systems brought mesh networks to the masses.
What was once the purview of enterprise networking is now readily in your home, giving way to increased connectivity and responsiveness.
Any system has its drawbacks, and if you’ve been on the fence about purchasing one of these routers, you might want to read on before making a decision.
What Is the Amazon eero?
The Amazon eero is a mesh router, to put it quite simply. It differs from other routers by providing additional satellites or nodes to increase the range of your wireless network. These nodes effectively function by intercommunication between each other and the base station or home router.
The eero makes setting up one of these networks relatively easy. Anyone with serious network engineering chops can relate to how difficult it is to scope and account for coverage in an office building.
Amazon’s take on it has dispensed with the lengthier setup processes. You can even administer it with your smartphone or Amazon Echo.
Reasons to Avoid an Amazon Eero
So, now that you know a bit more about the eero, let’s take a look at seven valid reasons why you want to avoid it.
1. No Multi-Gigabit Outputs
All models of the eero come with Ethernet ports. These are beneficial in allowing users to get the full bandwidth rating of their network without having to contend with wireless connections. This also leaves that wireless bandwidth wide open for other devices to use.
The latest model of the eero does come with a 2.5-gigabit input port, which is great for fiber users. However, when looking at the output ports, you’re stuck with just a gigabit. For most broadband plans this isn’t a huge deal.
Users that are on fiber plans will likely find this to be one of many reasons to avoid an Amazon eero.
2. No Designated Backhaul Band
Before clarifying this point, it is best to explain what a backhaul band is. A backhaul band acts as a direct pipeline to the main station. When you consider each node undergoes intercommunication to allow connectivity, having a dedicated line makes sense.
More high-end mesh systems come with a dedicated backhaul band out of the box. The Amazon eero does not, and instead provisions one as necessary.
If the eero was a tri-band device, this wouldn’t be an issue. However, if you’re looking for constant availability, this might be another the valid reason to avoid the Amazon eero.
3. Overkill for Below 1,600 Square Feet Homes
Mesh networks are great for providing massive network availability. Most homes under 1,600 square feet aren’t going to benefit from the wider availability, however. For most users in a smaller home, a high-powered dual-band or tri-band router will do the job just fine.
The Amazon eero is certainly very capable, but it isn’t the best fit for smaller homes. This isn’t a massive dealbreaker. However, if you’re in an apartment or another sort of smaller dwelling, then this is just another of the reasons to avoid an Amazon eero.
4. High Expense for Area Coverage
The basic cost for an eero system with three individual nodes is $299.99. If you’re looking to add additional routers to the equation, that’s an additional $139.99 per router.
If you consider the cost of a well-built tri-band router, it seems a bit odd to opt for the eero given the additional expenses. Some tri-band routers even come with mesh support out of the box, so you could add additional nodes to those while still providing massive coverage across your entire living area.
If you need area coverage, then this isn’t a consideration you should keep in mind. However, if you’re open to alternative solutions, this could be one of many reasons to avoid an Amazon eero.
5. Difficult to Connect Printers
Networked printers typically rely on WPS to connect. Amazon’s eero doesn’t come with WPS, as a security consideration. WPS is generally a rather unreliable means of connecting devices to a network. However, printers typically don’t serve as the best gateways for bad actors.
If you’re relying on a networked printer, you can still connect to your eero network. That said, it’s going to take some pretty serious workarounds that might not be the easiest task for less tech-savvy folks. As such, this is just another of the reasons to avoid an Amazon eero.
6. Media Servers Need Workarounds
This calls back to the lack of standard network protocols some users will experience with printers. Most routers utilize something called UPnP, or Universal Plug and Play. This makes opening ports an automatic process for devices connecting to other devices on a local network.
The eero doesn’t really provide any sort of functionality in this regard, so you’ll have to forward ports. If you’re just looking to run a Plex server or something of the like, this is another one of the reasons to avoid an Amazon eero.
7. Privacy Concerns
This final reason is less about functionality and more about your own autonomy and privacy. The eero as with other Amazon devices, anonymously collects telemetry. Now, with an Echo, this isn’t a huge deal because it likely boils down to music stations, podcasts, and checking the weather.
However, when you consider everything you transmit on the web during a given day, this is a huge concern. The eero anonymously collects data based on the number of devices you’re using, what applications you’re running, and what sort of traffic you’re transmitting.
This is one of the massive reasons to avoid an Amazon eero. You can’t opt out of this data collection. You’re only recourse is to pick another device if you don’t usage statistics being sent out about what you’re doing on the web.
Alternatives to the Amazon Eero
There are quite a few alternatives to the Amazon eero on the market currently. Here are a few of our favorites here at History-Computer.
Tri-Band routers are always a great choice for providing wide network connectivity to your home. A router like the TP-Link Archer AX75 is a dependable choice that comes with the option of connecting mesh nodes.
You get access to a 2.4, 5, and 6 GHz band, meaning you’ve got superb coverage. It also comes with WPS and other universal network protocols, so integrating your printer or other devices on your local network isn’t so much of a bother.
The Archer AX75 is $100 less than a three-pack of eero devices but comes with a lot more quality-of-life features that Amazon should adopt.
Dual-band routers are still the norm for most users, providing high speeds with a 5 GHz band and coverage with a slower 2.4 GHz band. TP-Link takes the prize once again with the Archer AX73 dual-band router.
This acts as a little sibling to the AX75 but features 802.11ax support. You’ll also have access to normal features like WPS, UPnP, and other network standards. If you’re looking for something with a less-than-complicated setup, this is an absolute breeze to install.
If you’re missing smart home functionality, you can also administer it with your Amazon Echo if you so choose.
- Supports Wi-Fi 6E
- Three bands of wireless coverage
- Covers up to 6,600 square feet with three nodes
- Can achieve speeds of up to 5.4 Gbps
The Google Nest is arguably the mesh system to beat when it comes to ease of setup. It doesn’t tightly integrate into Amazon’s ecosystem with your Echo. However, it does feature three bands of wireless connectivity and covers up to 6,600 square feet.
The Nest is quick to set up and also comes with a host of other great features. Less tech-savvy users won’t have to worry about security gaps as the network will correct itself. It also features a more intelligent QoS system, adjusting network traffic as needed so your bandwidth saturation is ideal.
Is it worth getting an Amazon eero? There are plenty of reasons to avoid the popular mesh system. However, it is a capable device if you’re willing to adjust to its shortcomings. No network device is perfect, so make sure you do your due diligence when looking at solutions for your home network.
|Reasons to Avoid an Amazon Eero Wi-Fi Mesh Router|
|1. It lacks ethernet outputs over 1 gigabit in speed.|
|2. The Eero doesn’t have a dedicated backhaul channel.|
|3. Amazon’s router is too much for smaller homes.|
|4. It can be expensive for the sort of area coverage it provides.|
|5. It is difficult to connect printers without workarounds.|
|6. The eero isn’t media server friendly out of the box.|
|7. There are privacy concerns when looking at how it collects your data.|
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