On Monday, Netgear added support for Beamforming+ to its R6300 802.11ac Dual Band Gigabit router, as well as its A6200 USB adapter, offering users better wireless Internet performance and reliability. For those who already have one (or both) of the devices, a firmware update has also been rolled out that adds Beamforming+ support to the devices. With the added support, users will see their 802.11ac gain additional speed, among other things.
Beamforming+ is a signal optimizer that pinpoints a Wi-Fi device's location and sends the wireless Internet signal its way, keeping tabs on where the device is at. In addition, the signal is amplified via adjustements, both of which combine to offer increased reliability and performance. As a result, users will see their download speeds increase, and will find some activities that have had issues don't anymore, such as talking over VoIP or watching a high-definition video.
"802.11ac is the wireless standard you need to support the increasingly heavy demands on your network for voice, video and data ... Our test data demonstrates that when we enable Beamforming+ on our R6300 WiFi Router, we see performance increase by 60 percent at a distance of around 50 feet when connecting to an 802.11ac device."
Those who have the R6300 router or A6200 adapter can download the firmware upgrade now from Netgear's Support site. Other 802.11ac users who want to take advantage of Beamforming+ are going to have to wait a bit longer, however. Netgear says it anticipates have a firmware upgrade for the rest of its 802.11ac routers available in "early summer," though it doesn't specify a date, and phrases it in such a way that the date may change.