Netgear Orbi Voice: a Smart Speaker, Mesh Router that Just Misses the Mark
Netgear has launched Orbi Voice at IFA 2018, combining all the best parts of an Amazon Alexa speaker and mesh router that has good intentions but doesn't quite hit the aesthetic mark.
As far as mesh routers go, Netgear has been an industry darling with their Orbi line. It is fast, super functional, and solves a lot of the friction of setting up a home network. More importantly, the Orbi line began to redefine how the consumer electronics industry thought about routers. No longer were brutish pieces of technology being thrown in cabinets or hidden behind a couch, defeating the purpose of the signal reproduction, and causing headaches from unknowing consumers.
Orbi was one of the first routers not only to begin utilizing the industry-leading mesh network protocol, it looked damn good doing it. The otherwise off-white ovoid shaped routers were actually delightful and clean to look it. It obviously screamed that it was a piece of technology, but it had an Apple-esque aesthetic that let it sit on any countertop without clashing with the design of a room.