Amazon buys eero: What does it mean for the price of Wi-Fi routers?

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Eero was the first company of note to solve Wi-Fi issues at home through what is known as "mesh" technology. On Monday came word that Amazon and eero will be meshing together, with the news that the e-commerce giant was acquiring the San Francisco startup, pending customary regulatory approvals.

"We are incredibly impressed with the eero team and how quickly they invented a Wi-Fi solution that makes connected devices just work," Amazon for devices and services Dave Limp, said in a release. "We have a shared vision that the smart home experience can get even easier, and we're committed to continue innovating on behalf of customers."

In the same release, eero CEO and co-founder Nick Weaver said his company's mission, from the beginning, "has been to make the technology in homes just work."

When it came to generally fast, reliable and secure Wi-Fi, eero, for the most part, delivered on that promise, though it came at a high cost to consumers.

When eero debuted, just short of three years ago, it was billed as the world's first home Wi-Fi system. The $499 system consisted of what were essentially three identical white boxes or Internet routers, one of which you plugged into your existing router via ethernet, and the other two you strategically placed in other rooms of your house. These boxes effectively provided wireless access points and Wi-Fi extenders, and unlike most of the routers that preceded them, they had no unseemly antennas sticking out. That meant you could keep them out in the open where they'd work better.

They've gotten a favorable reception from consumers; Eero boxes have a 4.6 customer rating, yes, on Amazon.

Eero are still not cheap, though the first generation eero system is now down to $359 on Amazon. A newer system consisting of one eero box and two beacons or extenders fetches $399.

If the deal goes through, Amazon plans to stick with the eero brand, according to a company spokesperson.

One thing to watch: Will Amazon lower prices further? If anything we want our Wi-Fi moving forward to be even more robust, given the increased load myriad smart home devices are placing on our Internet connections.

One thing eero helped do was usher in acceptance for these mesh-style products. Today various models along these lines include Google Wi-Fi, Netgear Orbi, and Linksys Velop.

In competing against Google and Apple, it's not the least bit surprising that Amazon would want to grab another piece for its own smart home ecosystem. That particular battle, of course, is really still in its relative infancy.

Terms of the Amazon-eero merger were not disclosed.


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