Life is too short to spend it staring at a frozen screen. Stop waiting for your download, get rid of all those pesky cables and boost your current WiFi system with the Asus WiFi line of fast routers and USB Wi-Fi adapters that can handle 3D video streaming and gaming.

Fast wireless connectivity

The old routers just can’t handle our new 3D HD video streaming and multiplayer video. The ASUS RT-N66U dual-band wireless-N900 gigabit router delivers incredibly fast, wireless connectivity. Using the ASUS AI Radar, it strengthen connections to wireless devices bumping up WiFi speed for both bandwidths of 5GHz and 2.4GHz up to 900Mbps –that’s almost by 50% for some people. A wall-mountable feature gets the ASUS RT-N66U off you desk and out from being underfoot. Even better –three detachable WiFi antennae extend the wireless range so RT-N66U can shoot the signal through multi-level homes and buildings to reach the basement where ordinary signals got to die.

Easy set up with parental control

Asus has taken care of the crazy set-up that older routers had that often ended in calling a technician for help. The RT-N66U comes equipped with the Asus’s Quick Internet Setup wizard that makes it a breeze to configure the router and get it working with your ISP’s gateway. A user-friendly interface also makes it simple for you to gain more control over your home network.

You can Quality of Service (QoS) and set up control traffic priority to kick in when there is a bottleneck and decide which traffic is more important. Automatic mode lets you easily assign highest priority whether it’s for online browsing or gaming while giving lowest priority to file-sharing applications. For most of us, that should be enough. But if you have home office that is sharing sources with streaming teens, the User-defined Priority lets you manually assign priorities to specific types of network traffic. You can cut off the flow to online gaming sites. The third option, User-defined QoS rules, lets you get even more specific and decide what services get linked and when. You specify importance based on criteria such as IP address, MAC address, and even service name. Consider it a sophisticated parental control that your kids can’t hack into where you can customize user access and monitor signal strength. The Traffic monitor allows you to web usage in a clear and graphical interface so you can also track someone is hogging the data plan.

The ASUS RT-N66U has two USB 2.0 ports so can be linked to a USB printer and a USB storage device giving you the ability to print from anywhere in your home and synchronize content on a PC, smartphones or tablets. You can also download and play multimedia files stored on a router-attached USB storage device on DLNA-compatible devices such as a PC, tablet, PlayStation 3, Xbox and Internet. A great way to create a WiFi network that works for you and your family.


Away from the pack

In January 2014, the new wireless networking standard was approved. IEEE 802.11ac can deliver data faster but it supports only 5GHz frequency, which is currently less crowded that the 2.4GHz frequency. Unfortunately, a 5GHz signal has less range so you may need a stronger router.

Asus has introduced the RT-AC56R Dual-Band Wireless AC1200 Gigabit Router to support this new Wi-Fi standard. The Asus RT-AC56R has a sleek casing with detachable external antennas sticking up from its back. It’s got flexibility: Mount it on the wall, put it flat on a surface or use the detachable base for a semi-vertical stance.

It’s got four LAN ports and one WAN port for a broadband modem. Since this is Gigabit Ethernet you’ll also get a fast-wired network quickly. Basically with this router where it doesn’t matter what configuration a device has – the Asus RT-AC56R supports them all. As well, you can have up six guests on this router  it the ideal companion for video gaming circles.

The 256MB of onboard DDR3 memory means the Asus RT-AC56R can handle multiple bandwidth-intensive tasks at the same time such as 4K video streaming, online gaming, and surfing the web. With a USB 2.0 port and USB 3.0 port you can easily connect peripherals such as external hard drives to stream content to both iOS and Android devices as well as share a printer.

The RT-AC56R shares the same features and options as the ASUS RT-N66U when it comes to Quality of Service (QoS) setup. It comes with the terrific Asus software wizard that walks you through each step. It’s a breeze to choose what device to add as well, the (QoS) whether they are connected through a non-wireless router or Ethernet-ready. Smartphones, notebooks, and desktop PCs that are 802.11ac-enabled will easily pair with the Asus RT-AC56R.

Along with encryption standards, you can utilize both firewall and access control standards for ultimate protection and parental control. A great option if you are planning on foregoing cable connections and starting to stream your entertainment.

Affordable WiFi upgrade

Bump up your desktop’s or notebook PC’s wireless network access with Asus Dual-Band Wireless USB-AC56R Adapter. This is particularly good option for older models without a built-in standard Wi-Fi card (or a device with a broken card). Plug in the AC56R into a USB port and get WiFi delivered fast to your desktop, laptop or tablet. Most wireless networking devices operate on the two different wireless bands and the USB-AC56R supports both 300 Mbit/s at 2.4 GHz and 867 Mbit/s at 5 GHz. USB 3.0 connectivity enables data transfer speeds up to ten times faster than with USB 2.0 and the next gen 802.11ac wireless means faster streaming of videos online, speedier file downloads, and more fluid online gaming. It also has a dual internal antenna design and a removable high-gain external antenna to boost reception and distance from Internet hotspots or routers. Another great option large homes and offices with multi-floor locations.


Boost your Windows connectivity with the Asus USB-AC53 Dual-Band Wireless-AC1200, the latest generation of wireless connection. While it does support the 300 Mbps at the 2.4 band the USB-AC53 really shines with 867 Mbps at 5GHz where it can transfer files and data faster while streaming HD without any hiccups.

The USB-AC53 requires only one free USB port and is able to detect and connect to hidden routers and access points. It ships with a handy little clip for attaching it to a screen that combines with the USB extension cable and stand to give you ultimate flexibility in placement. The accompanying disc provides a WPS wizard and creates a simple plug and play set-up for the notebook or PC to get connected to Wi-Fi in seconds. The USB-AC53 is one of the most convenient and portable way to upgrade your connection without breaking the bank

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Shelagh McNally
I’ve been covering technology since 1992 and I’ve seen a lot of technology come and go. I enjoy following the trends, spotting the winners and losers and teaching consumers how to get the best products and services for their needs. My work has been published in the National Post, Reader's, Yahoo, Miami Herald and other North American publications and websites.