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Thursday, July 19, 2021

I’m not in the market for a new wireless access point for my home. But if I were, I’d probably have to go for Belkin’s N1 Vision wireless router.

Why? Because it does something that shouldn’t be remarkable, but — thanks to inexplicable design short-sightedness in the computer hardware industry — is: It actually tells you who’s tapping into your wireless network.

With an interactive L.C.D. panel on the front, the router shows the number of connected users and devices, the speed of your uploads and downloads and even how much network bandwidth is being used.

I’m sure there’s other wireless equipment that gives you this valuable metric. But most of the stuff out there doesn’t. In this day of mobile Web devices that sniff out any and all hotspots, I don’t know why manufacturers don’t put this functionality front and center. Why not make it easy for the user to know if someone’s tapping into the house wi-fi?

Easy-to-set-up encryption should, of course, prevent Web leeching. But what if someone cracks it? Again, it’s nice to have a quick way to check.

Come to think of it, my current wireless access point is probably about seven years old, at least. It works fairly flawlessly, but it’s bound to fail sooner rather than later. So I’ll definitely have to keep this in mind for an upgraded replacement.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 07/19/2007 10:30:17 PM
Category: Wi-Fi | Permalink |

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  1. Every router I’ve ever had has a simple “attached devices” screen, even the old 11mbps router I had when I was back in Ohio. Furthermore, I don’t know anybody who keeps their wireless router anywhere it would be easy to check — most people I know have it in a closet or in the garage somewhere.

    that having been said, the router you speak of is really badass, but its features aren’t really new by any means. it just has an extra screen on the unit itself, as opposed to viewing the info in your web browser.

    Comment by tim — 07/19/2007 @ 11:16:05 PM

  2. As is typical with these things, I’m atypical: I don’t have an out-of-the-way place to put such gear. I don’t have it center-stage, but my current equipment is in a spot where it’s not a big deal to peer down and see what’s happening.

    I’d think having the screen on the unit itself is new, or at least more user-friendly. I do turn off the computer sometimes (daily actually), meaning browser-based monitoring isn’t always most convenient.

    I can turn the wireless access point off too, and do if I know for sure it’s not going to be used for several hours; again, it’s located in such a spot where turning it back on is a snap. But it’d be nice to have that screen right there for a quick visual status during times of use.

    Comment by CT — 07/20/2007 @ 09:22:28 AM

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