Compact, flexible but does what it says on the tin. For a small cost.
With technology getting smaller and smaller, I was waiting for a time when bulky wireless extenders found their place in the skip yard and not in our homes.
Now this product is what I would consider a stepping stone in the right way to bridge portability and wireless connectivity, and let’s face it we live in the wireless age.
This product was designed to be sleek, small, and highly portable. It runs on a minimal power source making it also incredibly energy efficient, something I consider very important with a product that could, in theory, be used around the clock.
With the Nano router there really isn’t a huge amount to say about how it looks, the packaging was great and the instructions even better. You also get a small power adapter to help run the product.[divider]Operating Modes[/divider]
The router itself has 5 modes, as below:
- Router mode – as a cable router, you connect this to your incoming PPPOE/LAN connection and you can share the connection with all of your wireless devices. Suitable for hotel and home networks.
- Access Point Mode – adds a Wi-Fi Hotspot to a wired network.
- Client Mode – (TV/Game Console Adapter). If you have a TV or console that can use a Wi-Fisignal but doesn’t have the necessary adapter, this will do the same job with a little configuration.
- Repeater Mode – extend your existing Wi-Fi, improving coverage and signal strength.
- WISP Mode – Simultaneous Wireless ISP access and sharing.
For those not so technically minded, the Quick Setup option will get you started with ease. Pretty much every aspect of the configuration can be changed, from wireless security to DHCP capabilities and network address reservations.[divider]Value[/divider]
I found the TP-LINK TL-WR802N for roughly £25 which given its size is justified, usually the manufacturing process for smaller technology can often increase the price.
But when you consider how much a fully-fledged router can cost, and even full-size hotspot adapters, I think the pricing is spot on. But I feel one thing I wanted to see with this product even at its size was perhaps a small internal 1000mAh battery, however that is me being very picky.
Other than that I’d rather pay £25 for a TP-LINK product than £25 for some of the alternatives.[divider]Performance[/divider]
I ran a few tests to determine the true speeds delivered by the TL-WR802N.
In close proximity, as is intended in terms of a hotel room, I was seeing signal strength of -34dB or 70%.
An average file transfer speed of 50.3 Mbps doesn’t sound like much, but let’s compare it to the previous model, when you consider that this new version of the Nano router is 50% faster than the previous generation.
So there you have it, a tiny networking component that delivers a 50% speed boost over its last generation. The TP-LINK TL-WR802N Nano Router is compact, flexible and offers great value for money. At just £24.99, it’s good enough for a spot in anyone’s travel bag.[divider]Verdict[/divider]
Now the problem with this product is that its actually quite hard to give it a negative review. Its packed with interesting features and at the price of this product most people should be really happy with it. And during performance tests this little router utterly decimated what I considered decent WiFi in a small form factor to be like. I was expecting a small hotspot but this little router kept on working and holding a signal even when far away from the product.
Whilst I consider this the product you would use to create a wireless hotspot on the go, its a well performing product in every situation which is what makes it shine.