Netgear Orbi Pro
The Netgear Orbi Pro is meant for companies who want to provide large offices and business spaces with fast and reliable WiFi. Good design, security options and three separate networks make this a proper offering.
Router and satellite
5000ft WiFi-coverage and expandable with extra satellites
Wireless setup and management
Easy setup without wires: Deliver business-class WiFi everywhere without requiring additional, complicated wiring or installation costs
Tri-band high-speed WiFi: Delivers both reliable WiFi coverage and maximum internet speeds even as more devices connect through the fast, dedicated wireless connection between the Orbi Pro Router and Satellite
Blazing-fast 802.11ac WiFi: Supports speeds up to 3Gbps (AC3000*)
Multiple SSIDs: Defines 3 dedicated and completely isolated WiFi networks for your business, employees, and customers
Grows with your Business: Easily extends WiFi network coverage up to 10,0000 square feet with additional Orbi Satellite(s)
Seven Gigabit Ethernet ports (3 on the router and 4 on the satellite): Support wired connections for devices to the Admin Network
Advanced security options: Supports WPA/WPA2-PSK
Flexible placement: Sits on a desktop or can be easily mounted to the ceiling or wall with included mounting solutions
Easy management: Creates secure, personalized, business-grade WiFi in minutes through the Orbi app or any web browser
Three separate WiFi networks for security and versatility
Quality design and materials
Materials provided for ceiling or wall mounting
The Netgear Orbi Pro has been recently introduced to the market to “Maximize the WiFi speeds you are paying for, to every inch of your Business and beyond”. In other words, you’ll have fast business WiFi everywhere.
When it comes to surface covered, it promises 350m2 or 5,000 square feet of high-performance AC3000 (3Gbps) WiFi. It should be seen as a replacement for your currently used router, and comes as a router plus satellite solution – more on that later.
Check out the product page at Netgear for more.
Specs and features
Here are the key features at a glance:
- Easy setup without wires: Deliver business-class WiFi everywhere without requiring additional, complicated wiring or installation costs
- Tri-band high-speed WiFi: Delivers both reliable WiFi coverage and maximum internet speeds even as more devices connect through the fast, dedicated wireless connection between the Orbi Pro Router and Satellite
- Blazing-fast 802.11ac WiFi: Supports speeds up to 3Gbps (AC3000*)
- Multiple SSIDs: Defines 3 dedicated and completely isolated WiFi networks for your business, employees, and customers
- Grows with your Business: Easily extends WiFi network coverage up to 10,0000 square feet with additional Orbi Satellite(s)
- Seven Gigabit Ethernet ports (3 on the router and 4 on the satellite): Support wired connections for devices to the Admin Network
- Advanced security options: Supports WPA/WPA2-PSK
- Flexible placement: Sits on a desktop or can be easily mounted to the ceiling or wall with included mounting solutions
- Easy management: Creates secure, personalized, business-grade WiFi in minutes through the Orbi app or any web browser
See also the official press release on the Netgear website here.
What’s in the box
⦁ Orbi Pro router (Model SRR60)
⦁ Orbi Pro satellite (Model SRS60)
⦁ Power adapter (2) adapter varies by region
⦁ Ethernet cable
⦁ Rubber feet (2 sets)
⦁ Mount bases (2)
⦁ Mount covers (2)
⦁ Mount base screws (2 sets)
⦁ Wall brackets (2)
⦁ Wall anchors with screws (4)
⦁ T-bracket with screw (2)
⦁ T-bracket screws (2 sets)
⦁ Ceiling bracket (2)
Plenty of mounting material for those who want to make sure this is secured somewhere to a wall or ceiling.
See also the Netgear FAQ page on this product.
First impressions of the kit are very positive: two well designed network devices (we’ll call them ‘router’ and ‘satellite’ from now on, as per Netgear’s own naming), a proper quick start guide as well as mounting materials for wall or ceiling. This last bit might seem unimportant from a home perspective, but at the office you don’t want devices like this to just sit on a desk or cabinet somewhere.
Optimum range and aesthetics would call for devices like these to be properly wall or ceiling mounted: its design would fit many modern offices and (half) open business spaces.
Talking about design: this combination of router and satellite has to be one of the nicest-looking ones I’ve ever seen in network hardware design. They are by no means the smallest on the market for sure: just slightly smaller than a piece of A4 paper in width and height, but their sleek design makes up for that, and more!
Seeing as the Netgear Orbi Pro is to be used in (large) offices and business unites, its size shouldn’t matter too much. Rather, its design will fit right into most modern offices as mentioned before. Network admins selecting this hardware for the business WiFi solution at an office will be applauded for their design taste: a compliment not often given when someone sees a WiFi router hanging on the ceiling!
Installation of the Netgear Orbi Pro router and satellite is very straightforward. From unpacking and checking out the quick install guide, I had everything up and running within about 10 minutes. This includes the physical set-up, plugging in the devices, connecting my smart phone and installing. The router itself detects the internet connection from the modem fairly quickly: within 30 seconds it provided internet for connected devices. This counts for the satellite as well: the router detected its satellite on the first try, in under a minute.
Connecting the satellite can be done in two ways: via the sync button on the back of both devices, or via smart phone (app). I used the first option, and this went fine: the smart phone screen showed soon enough that connecting the satellite was a success.
Networks, range and speeds
This is where the Netgear Orbi Pro should shine, and as promised, it does. Both wired and wireless speeds across devices are impressive to very impressive.
For example, sending a 1GB file from one Windows 10 computer to another, where the first computer is connected via wire to the satellite and the other via wire to the router, is achieved with a whopping ~52MB/sec transfer speed, with peak speeds of 60MB/sec.
During a second WiFi-only test, throughput speeds reached up to 4MB/sec with a WiFi n-type dongle: reasonable to fast speeds with no drops in the throughput.
It looks like this was more limited by hard drive read/write times than by the available AC-1300 WiFi-connection speed: kudos to Netgear in this case.
The range was tested in a large apartment situated on one floor. For the range test the router and satellite were put as far apart as possible (roughly 18 meters): with several walls and doors in between them, communication speeds did not drop. This was done with the devices in the ‘worst’ places (corner, on the floor) possible, on purpose. Your mileage may vary of course, but when properly mounted to a wall or ceiling with the provided materials, this Netgear Orbi Pro kit is sure to shine.
The Netgear Orbi app allows for some simple yet quick management. It can be used for installation of the router and satellite(s), but is not necessary for that. From the app home page, WiFi settings, a device list, WiFi 2 (a second channel) and a speed test are available.
The home page of the app also shows whether internet is available, and how many satellites are online. The hamburger menu top-left shows a few more options: details about the Orbi WiFi system, adding a satellite, executing a new setup, consulting support, view the about or logout.
All in all, a nice yet basic app which can be useful for network admins who need to keep an eye on their Orbi Pro WiFi devices, or need to test things through the speed test. This speed test will be done from the router to internet – which is a wired connection, so it’s not a WiFi speed test.
The web interface is quick to get used to – mostly because my current router is also from Netgear and uses the same (though now dated) interface. Basic allows for the basic settings concerning internet, wireless, attached devices, the guest portal as well as adding an Orbi satellite.
Advanced settings allow you to fine tune wireless settings and also set up more sophisticated things like port forwarding, VPN, dynamic DNS and more.
Security-wise, the combination of three separate networks (more on that below) on the Netgear Orbi Pro and extensive security options (block sites, block services, access control) in the web interface works well to ensure several layers of protection.
For example, the three networks are well thought out. From the press release:
- ⦁ Admin Network: Designed to provide access to critical infrastructure such as private servers, VoIP systems, or computers that contain sensitive data like patient files, Point of Sale (PoS) terminals, printers, etc. It enables access to the Gigabit Ethernet ports on Orbi for connecting wired devices.
- Employee Network: Designed for employee BYODs (Bring Your Own Device) which need access to the internet, but do not need access to the systems on the Admin Network or the Gigabit Ethernet Ports. It has an SSID that is different than the admin network, and its password can be easily changed as employees leave.
- Guest Access Network: Completely isolated from the other two networks, it is designed to be used by customers, patients, clients and other visitors. Their devices get access to the internet through a captive portal for only a limited amount of time as easily set by the network administrator.
The more sensitive the data is that’s going through the network, the more it should be handled by the admin network: like for example, patient files or financial data. All three networks are fully separate from each other.
Did the Netgear Orbi Pro kit live up to its launch slogan in the press release?
“Affordable, easy-to-install system covers your office or retail site with fast, reliable WiFi without requiring networking expertise, cabling or professional installation”
Yes, it did live up to its launch slogan actually. All boxes are ticked: easy installation, minimal to no cabling (only power to satellite for example), setup of WiFi and satellite is simple too. From a corporate point of view, other things are important too, and those have been addressed as well: think of multiple separate WiFi networks, extensive security options, mounting materials and speedy coverage with a proper range. Nothing is skimped on in this case: it seems that there is nothing to fault the Netgear Orbi Pro, so a great product in all areas. Highly recommended!