In the world of work, most of us are entirely dependent on high-speed access to the Internet. Being unable to get online is not an option. And whether it’s getting access in an area where there’s no fixed broadband or simply as a backup or failsafe for fixed broadband, a 5G mobile hotspot router is an essential piece of business equipment.
To address this market, Netgear has announced the launch of the new Nighthawk M6 Pro mobile hotspot router with support for the 6E Wi-Fi band and the more usual 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. The ultra-fast M6 Pro supports 5G Internet speeds up to 4Gbps and can handle Wi-Fi speeds up to an impressive 3.6Gbps.
Because the way we work has changed since the pandemic, the need for an always-on, secure, high-speed internet connectivity for multiple devices is essential. Whether on the road, traveling for business or away on vacation, having access to the Internet using secure Wi-Fi is imperative, especially since public Wi-Fi isn’t always secure and certainly not worth risking when it comes to critical business transactions or personal bank transfers.
The Netgear M6 Pro includes a built-in firewall and can handle up to 32 client devices simultaneously. And thanks to the roll-out of 5G services, it’s even possible to enjoy uninterrupted video streaming, Zoom calls, online gaming, and social media, as well as the ability to upload and download large data files. And with worldwide roaming support, the M6 Pro might make a handy travel companion.
For those using the M6 Pro at home permanently, such as in a vacation home, the device has an In-Home Performance Mode which can be turned on simply by taking the M6 Pro’s reachable battery out and powering it with an external power adapter. With In-Home Performance Mode, the M6 Pro can cover areas as large as 1,000 square feet. In even larger spaces, the hotspot can be used with an existing Wi-Fi router by plugging it into an Ethernet port with support for speeds up to 2.5 Gbps.
For areas where the cellular signal is weak, the M6 Pro can have its reception boosted by plugging in external antennas into ports on the back of the unit. Another handy feature is the M6 Pro’s USB-C port which is bi-directional, so as well as being used to charge the M6 Pro’s battery, the port can be used as a high-speed data line for hard-wiring a computer or a laptop, offering speeds up to 5Gbps. The port can even turn the M6 Pro into a power bank and charge a smartphone or other device using the power in the M6 Pro’s rechargeable battery.
The Nighthawk M6 Pro uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon SDX65 Mobile Platform, which delivers some of the fastest speeds on the market. The built-in battery can keep the M6 Pro going for up to 13 hours on a single charge. Regarding networks, the M6 Pro is fully unlocked, which means it can take any SIM from major 5G/4G network operators.
Like previous iterations of Netgear’s M Series of mobile hotspot routers, the M6 Pro is easy to set up and use. It’s compact enough to pop in a work bag or even an overcoat pocket if necessary. For navigating around the menus, there’s a color touch screen for changing settings and keeping an eye on data usage. The touch screen can also be used to monitor, view and change the Wi-Fi name and password, check mobile signal strength, and manage network settings such as fall over.
The fall over function is probably the M6 Pro’s hidden power. The system can be set up, so it only uses the 5G cellular connection if the main broadband drops. Imagine you have a vacation home or an office with security cameras where footage is uploaded to the internet whenever movement is detected. If the fixed broadband connection goes down because an intruder cuts the phone line, then the M6 Pro’s fall over can kick in and start uploading footage in real time over 5G. The feature can even be used the other way, with the cellular connection being the default high-speed connection over 5G but reverting to a slower fixed backup broadband if the 5G goes down.
Verdict: The Netgear M6 Pro is a clever device that offers all the features today’s road warrior needs. There are 2.4, 5 and 6E Wi-Fi bands, cellular data coverage up to 5G speeds of 4Gbps (depending on reception) and extended Wi-Fi coverage for home use. Whether for a quick business trip, extended vacation, or a mix of each, having a robust and secure Internet connection is invaluable. The Netgear M6 Pro isn’t cheap but is the best on the market and a Rolls-Royce of mobile hotspot routers. If you must be connected securely to high-speed Internet, the M6 Pro is a great way to ensure you stay connected.
Pricing & Availability: The Netgear M6 Pro Mobile Router (MR6450) is available now in the UK and costs £899.99.
More information: netgear.com/uk
- 5G internet with speeds up to 4Gbps.
- Ultra-fast Wi-Fi using 2.4GHz, 5GHz and 6EGHz bands with speeds up to 3.6Gbps.
- Supports up to 32 client devices simultaneously.
- Qualcomm Snapdragon SDX65 chipset supporting 5G’s Sub-6 band.
- 2.8-inch LCD touch-screen interface.
- Built-in firewall for a private Wi-Fi connection with additional password security.
- Unlocked for nano-SIM cards from major 5G/4G network operators.
- In-Home Performance Mode provides Wi-Fi coverage up to 1,000 sq. ft.
- USB-C port for charging a device or accessing an ultra-fast wired connection up to 5Gbps.
- Connections for external 5G antennas (sold separately).
- 5,040mAh battery with 13 hours from a single charge.
- HPUE support for better 5G range even in fringe areas.