With the development of home automation, mesh networks are on the rise. A boost to sluggish Wi-Fi is always welcome. And when this boost is counted in gigabits, it's pretty cool. It is that proposes Amazon with its latest Mesh Wi-Fi kit, the eero Pro 6.
Successors of Eero 6, the eero Pro 6 is a taurine version of the latter but still has a lot in common: mesh network Wi-Fi 6 tri-band with an Integrated ZigBee hub, offering a flow up to 1 Gb / s, 2 Ethernet ports per module and… communicating with Alexa ! Is its high price justified?
eero Pro 6: unboxing of the Wi-Fi Mesh kit fromAmazon
eero Pro 6 is available either individually or in a pack of 3. You can of course add as many as you want to cover your home. The price varies accordingly between 240 and 639 €.
The pack of 3, tested here, is packaged in a fairly large cardboard box (50,8 x 12,5 x 18,5 cm). As with its predecessors, it comes in a dark blue and turquoise glossy print. On the top, because it opens like a case, in addition to the visuals of the modules, you will find the main characteristics: Wi-Fi 6 m² cover, Hub, speed up to a 1 Gb / s… The " Works with Alexa Is hidden on the side, strangely, while the below lists the contents of the pack and what you need in addition (an ISP, a modem, a smartphone and a Wi-Fi network). Below presents the advantages of the system such as the ZigBee hub, simple configuration, network coverage… In short, we will come back to this.
Once opened, you will find, well placed on a plastic support, your 3 modules. Mains connection cables (with 27W earthless power adapters) are under each of the modules. These power cables connect via a USB-C type plug. An RJ45 cable is provided, but only one… Which is a shame given the sale price. You also have an installation guide of little interest.
The iero Pro 6 are quite successful in terms of design. These are squares flattened and rounded at the angles. Compared to the standard version, they are much bigger with their 14,2 x 13,8 x 4,8 cm and their unit weight of nearly 680 grams ! Made of ABS-type plastic, they are very sober. You only have the silver eero logo on the underside and an LED, only visible when they're on.
If we compare them to Eero 6, the difference in size is obvious: they are much wider and longer, but less thick. They are therefore larger with 940 cm3 each (instead of 586), i.e. 0,723 g / cm3 or the same density as oak wood. All this to say that it can find its place in all interiors because oak goes well everywhere.
What's new in the Pro version is that each module can be used both as a router or as a satellite module. Indeed, they all have 2 Ethernet ports, in addition to USB-C plug. Thus, for the router module, one of the ports will be used to connect it to your Internet Box and the second to connect a device that needs this type of connection such as a Philips Hue Hub, the ZigBee Tuya gateway...
And the others, located in strategic places in your home, will be able to accept a wired connection with a TV, a game console, etc. Much faster and more stable than Wi-Fi.
This modification is really a big strong point on this version. This is a basic characteristic effect that we were already entitled to expect with previous versions. a Mesh Wi-Fi network is actually used to extend your Wi-Fi network, but it also has limits that must be overcome with Ethernet. It is finally done.
Let's take a look at what this eero Pro 6 has in its belly.
- Brand Name : eero
- Model : eero Pro 6
- Dimensions in mm : 14,2 x 13,8 x 4,8 cm for 680 g
- Embedded protocol : ZigBee via an integrated Hub and tri-band Wi-Fi 6 (2,4 and 2 x 5 GHz) (802.11ax), compatible with previous Wi-Fi standards. Also works with Alexa.
- Processor : Quad-core processor, 1,6 GHz,
- RAM memory : 1 GB of RAM
- Warehousing : 4 GB of flash storage
- Connectivity : 2 Ethernet ports per module
- Network security and services :
- WPA3 et WPA2 for the protection of your wireless network,
- Cloud connectivity:
- TLS v1.2 + (encryption protocol for your data),
- BEA (same, but a different protocol),
- SHA-256 (encryption system set up by the NSA),
- RSA (asymmetric cryptography).
- But also :
- DHCP (ensures the automatic configuration of the IP parameters by assigning them an address),
- IPv6 (improvement of IPv4 with more address possible and better communication),
- NAT (management by the router for the correspondence of external and internal addresses),
- VPN passthrough (allows your VPN network to work on your entire network),
- UPnP, this is what enables your network to accept plug and play installations by opening and closing ports automatically.
- Port forwarding and static IP
- DDNS, to transfer an IP address from one of your devices to a fixed domain name such as https: ...
The configuration of this iero Pro 6 is really very interesting. First of all, the brand uses technology True Mesh. It is in-house technology that improves mesh routing algorithms. It makes it possible to analyze the network and manage its network topology in real time in order to find the best “route” to send data through the network and adapt the traffic to avoid any interference. So this will help reduce congestion, manage buffering and loss of connection. Ideal for streamer 4K content, play fairly greedy online games… Thanks to this, the speed between two eero devices (LAN speed) is up to twice as fast and finally a gain of nearly 40% on the network globally. It is also compatible with other generations of eero routers to easily expand your network or combine eero devices you already have.
In addition, the multi-protocol (various encryption, DDNS, passthrought VPN, etc.) allows network security very interesting that you are going to set up and develop. The use of technology Wi-Fi 6 tri-band is an excellent point because, not only will the Wi-Fi be more stable and faster, but the three bands will allow a better distribution of devices and therefore a set more fluid.
You can connect to it up to 75 devices without loss of flow (in theory). Of course, to take advantage of Wi-Fi, it is also necessary to have Wi-Fi 6 compatible devices. In fact, taking a motorway at 130 km / h will be less interesting if you drive a truck limited to 90… C ' is the same for the Wi-Fi protocol.
Le ZigBee Hub is also an undeniable asset. It is the same as that of the Echo Studio, Show 2, Echo 4 devices… Thus, when you attach a device to it, it will go up in the application. Alexa and will be usable by voice.
eero Pro 6: installation and use
The installation follows the same procedure as for the eero 6. It is indeed relatively simple, in particular for the router module. First of all, download the application eero for Android or iOS and use your login details Amazon. Before connecting the eero Pro 6, it is necessary to unplug everything that is connected to your modem or internet box. Then connect your new router to it with the supplied RJ45 cable. Power it on and return to the app. Then follow the instructions.
Let the app search for the router. It takes one to two minutes, see more. Indeed, it is necessary to make discover eero Pro 6 by the application but also to have an internet flow at a given time so that it communicates. It also takes time for your ISP Box to restart and reconnect to the internet to complete the installation.
« The eero Pro 6 are customizable!«
Once the router is found, you will come to indicate the room where he is et create your network by giving it a name and a password which will define it. Then you have to let it do all the configuration ...
You can then y associate additional modules. Install your repeater in the desired room and follow the instructions in the app. When the satellite module is detected, select the room it is in and you're done. Do this for each of the modules. At the end, finalize your installation and you will have a message telling you that everything is ready to work. You can add additional modules as needed by going to settings.
Easy no? Well no, not really. Indeed, as much the installation of the router was done without problem, as much that of the satellites was very delicate. We already had eero 6s in some rooms and wanted to put iero Pro 6 instead, but the hit test failed each time because the connection was not good enough. Strange thing because the router was in the same place as the eero 6 router and the modules too.
After 4 or 5 unsuccessful attempts, we installed the repeater in a closer room and there, miraculously, the installation went smoothly. Unfortunately, the goal was to use it in Ethernet for a game console, impossible if the two devices are not in the same room. So we moved it and plugged it back into the room we originally wanted, and everything finally started to work. Same problem and same configuration for the third module, which had to be placed in an office, about 20 meters from the router (but on an extension). Nothing to do, impossible. The eero 6 going very well, the Pro module therefore remained in its box. If it is necessary to put 3 modules (including one in relay) to cover a distance of 20 m, what is the point?
Of course, the location of the modules is important because they must both be "visible" to the router and best broadcast in the desired area. But if it works with the standard version, why not with the pro version? Is it because of the specific communication band of the eero Pro (TrueMesh), allowing a much faster throughput speed? This indeed seems possible because, the higher the frequency, the faster it is, but the less range there is. We are therefore more than doubtful about the 560 m² of coverage announced when we see that we can barely cover a distance of 20 meters.
The interest of this network is the fact that you can come and modify it as you wish if you know your way around. Otherwise, it also works great on its own, like your initial Wi-Fi. It is therefore in this sense quite versatile and adapts to everyone.
This is a view of connected devices to your network. On the upper part, you will have access to the data by module. Note that when you have the “<–>” logo, it means that the device is connected via Ethernet.
With "internet", you have information on your internet speed from your box, via the router module. You can also run a flow test. By going to the router, "living room" in this case, you will know your speed allocated to your network. On the other hand, for the Wi-Fi modules, it is not presented in the same way. You will have the number of connected device, the IPs ... but by entering each device, you will be able to see its instant data usage. You also have the opportunity to cut off network access. Very practical for a laptop or a teenager's console!
Here you can get an idea of your throughput and also your data consumption (the rest does not concern us). View by week, day and year. But be careful, to have this information daily and monthly, it requires a subscription to eero Secure. We will come back to it but it is a shame.
This function will allow you to manage the subscription to eero Secure, to manage your connected home via Amazon and participate in the beta eero Labs.
Subscription eero Secure provides access to advanced security, firewall management, data usage history, VIP assistance, a content filtration system, ad blocking and more… It will cost 3,99 € / month or 39,99 € / year. It's expensive, especially since basic functions like data tracking are subject to it.
If you want to go further in securing your network, via DDNS for example, for remote access, or even additional protection via three security applications (1Password for password management, Malwarebytes for protection against malware and Encrypt.me for the VPN for all your devices), you will need to subscribe to eero Secure+ at € 10,99 / month or € 109,99 / year. It is very expensive but more dispensable than the subscription to eero Secure.
The “connected home part” is linked to Alexa. When you create your eero account with your login details Amazon, the voice assistant is activated by default. To control your eero devices with Alexa, you must activate the Skill eero. Thanks to this, you can activate the guest network, find your phone if it is connected to Wi-Fi, activate or deactivate the connection of a device to the network (useful if your kids do not cut their online games in the time) ... Unfortunately, the skill does not always initialize with identifiers Amazon. Fr. The brand is aware of this problem and has been working on it (for several months) ...
The ZigBee Hub part will still work, even without the Skill eero. And that's good. You can come and install ZigBee devices directly via your modules which will therefore serve as Hubs. Two possibilities:
- In the Hub section, click on "Discover ZigBee devices",
- In your application Alexa, go to "Devices", "+" at the top right.
Eventually it comes to the same thing because you will come to the same place. Then select the type of device to use, put your device to be installed in pairing mode and wait. The latter will go back under Alexa as is done with an integrated gateway. The module therefore behaves like a Amazon Echo with integrated hub and easily replaces them. Indeed, your device will then appear in the application and will therefore be controllable by voice.
Here, you will be able to get your hands dirty. You can change the name of your network, change the password, manage guest access (and configure it), receive notifications, make updates, add a new network or new modules.
In the game "Network settings", you can get into the hard. To be reserved for those who know a little about network management.
- WAN IP Address : DHCP management (default) or static IP address.
- IPv6 : activate or not this management. If not, you stay in IPv4.
- DHCP and NAT : Configure how the system assigns IP addresses (automatic, manual or bridge).
- Port reservation and transfer : management of IP reservations, port forwarding, part-fire ...
- DNS : choose the default ones or customize them
- DDNS : come connect an IP of your network to a secure internet address for remote access.
- UPnP : activate or not the Plug and Play.
- band-steering : allows connection to the 5 GHz band of compatible devices.
- Thread : It is a low power mesh network technology based on IPv6. It is also very good for safety and for the robustness of the whole because it can be repaired on its own.
Apart from the problem of initial connectivity of the relay modules, during use, the Wi-Fi network managed by the eero Pro 6 is very pleasant, fast and stable. This stability is really pleasant: no slowing down, no disconnection ...
Its big strong point remains the Ethernet connectors. During the tests, a console was connected in RJ45 to the module furthest away (the one that caused problems), and in the end, no problem. The speed is quite suitable for network games (CoD for example) and update downloads are done at more than acceptable speed (12 min for approximately 27 GB). This same module also allows, in Wi-Fi 6, to stream in 4K via a fire tv stick 4k max without any waiting and with a sharp image from the start.
The advertised 1 Gb / s speed is reached via download speeds fluctuating between 942 and 950 Mbps and uploads between 604 and 616 Mbps. Of course, these speeds will depend on your initial throughput. As said in the preamble, it is perfectly suited to housing with fiber. It will allow better flows.
More eero Pro 6 is above all very stable. We have not noticed a drop in performance (or those of the ISP) and it has never been necessary to disconnect modules to restart them, unlike some competing solutions. Just like with eero 6. The connection of third-party devices is also very simple (as well a connection to the network by a smartphone than installing a connected device). Roaming (the fact that a device switches from one module to another when you move it) goes smoothly. Really great… once installed.
To see it in action, watch the eero Pro 6 video test on our YouTube channel (like, subscribe, it's nice):
Each module has two Ethernet connectors (finally!) in order to bypass the Wi-Fi speed limits of your equipment (which remains the limiting factor, especially if they are not Wi-Fi 6). Equipped with a ZigBee Hub and linked to your account Amazon, you can also install devices using this protocol there and use them with Alexa, as with a speaker Amazon Echo provided with the same gateway.
In use, eero Pro 6 is indeed very powerful, stable and fast. A real pleasure every day. On the other hand, the installation of the modules is rather tedious because of a range seeming much more limited (fault with the third band at high frequency?). We can only be doubtful about the 560 m² announced when, during our tests, it was not possible to associate a gateway at 20 m ...
On the defect side, the subscription to the eero Secure and Secure + services is expensive, very expensive, and its absence far too limiting despite a selling price after all quite high. Last point, we regretted that the skill Alexa still does not work four months after reporting it to Amazon.
Offered from 249 € on Amazon. Fr, eero Pro 6 is quite expensive, but it's one of the best Mesh Wi-Fi kit that we have tested.