China’s ‘TP-Link’ Has The Potential To Be THE Next Networking Heavyweight IF It Can Stay Clear Of Security Woes.

.Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail

by Anura Guruge

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tplinkwifirI discovered TP-Link, serendipitously, last May when I was looking for a viable Wi-Fi Range Extender to replace the beyond pathetic Linksys RE2000 & RE1000 offerings.

I have had a TP-Link TL-WA850RE Range Extender, in daily use, for the last 6 months. I have been BEYOND impressed and happy. Far, far, far, far superior to the damn Linksys offering. Night and day. Chalk and cheese. The TL-WA850RE which only cost $25, to the $60 to $90 for a Linksys, works like a champ. Very few issues. I only have to recycle power on it very occasionally. It delivers a good signal, consistently.

I am looking at a new Wi-Fi router. In the process of upgrading our network again. I like to stay abreast of the latest networking technology, especially Wi-Fi. Though the Linksys router we now have is not more than 2 years old I want to get a new 802.11ac compatible Wi-Fi router. So I started looking around. Guess what I found TP-Link. I was kind of surprised. I didn’t expect them to dominate the high-end too. I asked around. Others are discovering TP-Link.

I did some research. It sure has potential. Chinese company. That, in this case, is an advantage. 95% of networking gear is manufactured there to begin with. So that is not an issue. Plus most of the software that goes into routers has to be standards-based and there is plenty of open-source code bases to get one going. So TP-Link seems to have got the formula right.

The only problem they face is concerns about SECURITY — a very germane and valid fear. Chinese networking companies are being accused of putting in Trojan Horse software in their products to monitor and ‘hack’ the traffic that they handle. That is naughty. Actually criminal. This is why I won’t use an ‘antivirus’ from Russia though I am fairly sure that Avast! monitors my data!

I am going to do some more due diligence on TP-Link. IF I don’t find too many nasties about their security I will get their high-end Wi-Fi router. I will, if course, keep you posted. Fingers crossed.