Portal Router Review
Portal is a Wi-Fi router that promises to give you “turbocharged” internet speeds. Here’s our review of the Ignition Design Labs router.
What Is the Portal Router?
Portal claims to be the biggest breakthrough in Wi-Fi in 15 years. The company won multiple CES awards and recently reached its funding target on Kickstarter, where over 4,500 backers pledged $792,000 to bring the project to life.
Portal promises to be the fastest router you can buy: you can stream ultraHD videos without buffering and play online games without lag.
Ignition Design Labs, the makers of Portal, is marketing the router to consumers while promising enterprise-grade wireless internet speeds. Without upgrading your internet connection, you can enjoy 3 times more spectrum and a 300 times speed increase.
It’s being specifically marketed towards those who live in crowded urban areas and use their internet heavily – like for streaming video or for online gaming.
Do 300 times faster internet speeds sound too good to be true? Probably. So let’s take a closer look at how Portal claims to work.
How Does Portal Work?
Traditional Wi-Fi routers limit you to just two lanes of Wi-Fi. These two lanes must be shared across all devices on the network.
Portal takes a different approach. It expands your network to six lanes. Then, it intelligently assigns your devices to the most open lanes so you get the best possible Wi-Fi experience.
You may think your router is doing a decent job of providing your home with internet. But in reality, traditional routers have some serious problems that make them ill-suited for our modern internet needs.
Ignition Design Labs describes how traditional routers are not capable of handling increasingly crowded airwaves (like when you’re using a router in an apartment building and competing with a dozen other wireless signals).
Older routers are also not designed to handle higher-resolution content – like HD or ultraHD video streaming, online gaming, and large downloads.
With that in mind, Portal promises to offer the following benefits over traditional Wi-Fi:
-3 times more spectrum
-300 times faster speeds
-UltraHD video and gaming
-Smart traffic steering
-Superior coverage and range
-Easily handle multiple users
-Smart router that learns your device behavior to avoid network congestion
These benefits come from Portal’s patent-pending FCC-approved radio scanner technology called FASTLANES. As mentioned above, that technology increases the number of Wi-Fi bands from 2 bands to 6 bands.
Under the hood, Portal is a quad-stream 802.11ac Wi-Fi router with nine antennas to provide the fastest connection speeds and strongest performance even through walls. There are also features like agile radios, spectrum smart adaptive algorithms, cloud-based network learning, and smart optimization.
I’m not going to dive too much further into the tech specs of the router, as they won’t mean much to most of you. However, Ignition Design Labs goes into much greater detail at their Technology page here.
About Ignition Design Labs
Portal is made by a company named Ignition Design Labs. That company is headquartered in San Jose, California and maintains a design center in Taiwan.
The company claims to consist of a “veteran team of wireless networking engineers” who have worked together for nearly a decade to build some of the most iconic brands in consumer electronics.
You can get in touch with the company by emailing [email protected].
Portal was launched through Kickstarter, where early adopter pricing started at $139 to $159 per router.
One router is enough to cover 2500 square feet of space in your home.
The first early adopters received their Wi-Fi routers in July 2016, with future deliveries taking place in September to December 2016.
Stay tuned to the company’s official website at GetPortal.io for more information about a general product release in the near future.
Should You Use Portal to Boost Wi-Fi Speeds?
Portal has been widely praised by the tech community and has attracted rave reviews online. Today, many consumers have already received their Portal Wi-Fi routers and successfully increased home Wi-Fi speeds.
Portal is best-suited for those who live in a crowded urban area and have high-demand internet needs. if you’re frequently streaming ultraHD or 4K video or playing online games, and you live in a place where more than 10 Wi-Fi networks show up on your computer’s internet scan, then you’ll get the greatest benefit out of Portal.