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Snippet: Apple Abandons Development of Wireless Routers ☇

Shared on November 21, 2016

Mark Gurman for Bloomberg:

Apple Inc. has disbanded its division that develops wireless routers, another move to try to sharpen the company’s focus on consumer products that generate the bulk of its revenue, according to people familiar with the matter.

Apple began shutting down the wireless router team over the past year, dispersing engineers to other product development groups, including the one handling the Apple TV, said the people, who asked not to be named because the decision hasn’t been publicly announced.

Apple hasn’t refreshed its routers since 2013 following years of frequent updates to match new standards from the wireless industry. The decision to disband the team indicates the company isn’t currently pushing forward with new versions of its routers. An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment on the company’s plans.

I’m not surprised by this news, although it is a bit disappointing that Apple is getting away from this market. In my own experiences, the AirPort units are generally rock-solid and easy to set up and maintain (I have set some up for friends family members and never get calls about router issues). Unfortunately, Apple neglected them by lagging on updates and competing products like Google’s OnHub, Eero, and Ubiquiti’s AmpliFi have taken the user-friendly app approach with better performance.

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