Peplink, a cellular-integrated router manufacturer popular with our audience of nomads, sent out a new product announcement this week for the Pepwave MBX Mini that sounds like a dream come true.
This router includes some incredible features:
- Dual 5G/Cat-20 LTE cellular modems.
- Dual USB ports that can support two additional cellular modems via tethering.
- Dual gigabit Ethernet WAN ports - for adding in Starlink or other wired upstream connections.
- Dual independent Wi-Fi radios, one devoted to Wi-Fi LAN and the other to Wi-Fi WAN.
- Four gigabit POE LAN ports - capable of powering access points or other connected gear.
- The same massive (2.5Gbps) router throughput as the enterprise-targeted HD2 and HD4 MBX routers.
- Multiple power options including AC and DC power connections.
- Many other advanced enterprise-level features.
All that sounds fantastic and is enough to make many mobile internet aficionados drool. So what's the downside?
The price: $6,999 MSRP.
And there are a few more downsides to keep in mind described below.
Key Mobile Internet Related Considerations:
- The MBX Mini has a LOT of antenna ports - four for Wi-Fi, eight for cellular, and one for GPS. Adding rooftop antennas to support all this connectivity will be a significant additional cost.
- With the addition of two Peplink Max Adapters, the MBX Mini could conceivably bond four 5G cellular connections at once.
- Strangely, the MBX Mini only includes support for Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) and not the newer Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) standard - a perplexing omission for a high-end router of this caliber, especially considering the Pepwave MAX BR1 Pro 5G now features Wi-Fi 6.
- The MBX Mini supports POE (Power over Ethernet) but requires a 56-volt input to support PoE. If you only supply 12V or 24V input, the POE output will be disabled.
- For those with very deep pockets, the MBX Mini is likely the best mobile router you can buy today. But a router of this caliber is overkill for almost everyone, and we hope some of these features will percolate down into more mainstream models in the years ahead.
For more information:
Updates Made to our Content as a Result of This news:
- Gear Center: Peplink Product Lineup