With the popularity of mesh routers increasing as of late, it's no surprise that ASUS has finally hopped on the bandwagon and announced its own mesh WiFi system, consisting of the HiveSpot and HiveDot. Now, in order for ASUS' new mesh WiFi system to work, there needs to be a minimum of three routers, those being either the HiveSpot or the HiveDot. Currently, though, it's unknown if buyers will be able to create a combination of both routers and have a certain amount of HiveSpot routers running alongside a certain number of HiveDot routers while all powering the same network. As well as a minimum of three routers, though, consumers must set one router up as the main router, with the other two acting as WiFi range extenders, allowing users to switch between the three routers automatically.
Regarding the differences between both routers, the main differences are the speed variations between the pair. The more powerful of the two, the HiveSpot, is a tri-band AC2134 router, offering pretty high speeds. What makes the HiveSpot more unique, though, is the fact that one of the three supported bands is dedicated solely to connecting to the other routers, allowing the output signal to then be outputted via one of the two remaining bands, allowing the HiveSpot to function with minimal or no signal loss. Looking at the HiveDot, though, this router only supports two bands as well as the slower AC1300 network speeds.
These aren't the only differences between the pair, though, with the HiveSpot offering a number of extras, namely AI Protection, which is a built-in network security feature that allows for detection and subsequent blocking of any online security threats, essentially securing the whole network at once. Finally, though, the main difference, and most likely the deciding factor for many, is the pricing of both routers. For those interested in acquiring the more expensive HiveSpot, three of these routers will cost $399, while the cheaper HiveDot will cost slightly less at $299 for three models. It is worth taking into account that, while the HiveDot is cheaper, it does not include the network protection that is included with the HiveSpot and it will also include signal loss due to the dual-band setup. Lastly, regarding the availability of the two models, ASUS has stated that both will be made available to consumers starting Q2 2017.