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Apple Discontinues Family of AirPort Routers, Offers Shopping Tips

It has been years since Apple has refreshed its lineup of AirPort routers, and now Apple has made official what has been long suspected. An Apple spokesman told iMore that the company has decided to discontinue the AirPort base station products.

The news comes as no surprise as the last time Apple updated any model of the AirPort lineup was in 2013 when it refreshed the Extreme and Time Capsule. Apple said that it will continue selling its AirPort products until the stock has been depleted.

The company will, however, continue to support the current generation of AirPort products for the next five years with parts and service. iMore states that Apple will be posting support documents to help customers who will be transitioning from AirPort products in the near future.

In the meantime, Apple has released a new support document to help Apple device users choose a Wi-Fi router to use with their gear. The new document can be found here: If you’re in need of a new router now, be sure to check out the selection at

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  • How do I get a non-Apple router to accept an Apple formatted external hard drive?

  • Are there any routers or Airplay alternatives out there? or are they assuming bluetooth on everything?

  • As sad as I am to see this product line go, I’m sure Apple has done their homework before making the decision. I just hope there were more than accountants on the evaluation team.
    I read the link to Apple’s suggestions when looking for a router, but I am annoyed that Apple has not provided some guides on how to handle the ‘Apple unique’ parts of their Airport system, namely AirPlay, and Time Machine use with portable Macs. I’m pretty sure I can do the Time Machine set up with a central router that has a USB connection for an external drive. Regarding AirPlay…I’m not sure. I have Apple Express devices wirelessly connecting to older stereo systems and one to a big printer that doesn’t have WiFi built in. Anyway, I think Apple should be careful to cover these subjects for the masses (i.e. the non-computer people in their market)

    If I’ve missed some link or reference that someone knows about that will be helpful.

  • Late last year, seeing the writing on the wall, I finally bit the bullet and bought the eero Pro WiFi System.

    I had done a lot of research, and even more waffling, about moving away from my many-years-old Apple Airport Extreme setup. It had served us well but was behind the times, both in technology (even with two Extremes and a couple of Expresses (Expressi?) we had dead spots) and software (which the Airport App could administer updates & restart the base stations, as well as show connections, it couldn’t do anything else, really).

    (FWIW, I went with the Pro (three full eeros) rather than the other options (eero + 2 beacons, eero + 1 beacon, etc.) as I have a two-story house with a lot of walls and distance, and knew this’d offer the best coverage for the size/shape of my home. Incidentally, if you get a “lesser” system and need more, adding more eeros (for more coverage) is quick & simple.)

    The eero system offered everything I was hoping for from an Apple Airport updated release: a mesh-based wifi setup (no more dead spots) and exemplary software (administerable via iOS app for me; of course there’s an Android app as well). It also features a very minimalist design & profile (something I very much liked about the Airport, tall though it was), and looks quite nice wherever placed.

    Setup was quick after downloading the eero app, which walks you through each step. I don’t remember much about it because there wasn’t much to it. About 15 minutes after opening the box, I was pretty much done.

    I did have a hiccup in that my initial speeds after installation were quite slow — but slow enough for me to realize it was likely a software issue. Sure enough, a software update followed a day later, and my speeds were up to snuff. (I am on Comcast’s 150Mbps tier, and I routinely show high volume speeds just above that, with overnight tests showing about 180Mbps.)

    Parents will like the Profile feature in the app — I set up a profile for each member of the household, and added their respective devices to it (anything that connects to the eero can be added to the profile; computers, handhelds, game systems, etc.). If someone needs a break (for whatever reason), you can pause their access to the network. This also allowed me to keep steady-stream devices (including the living room AppleTV and a few other items) online while pausing other devices.

    There’s a “Guest Access” option (which I’ve not had call to use yet) to allow someone to temporarily access your network.

    eero Plus is something I’m investigating next; it’s essentially a digital security suite, offering VPN, 1Password (great app!), and anti-virus, ad blocker, ability to create a kid-safe network, etc. It’s a $9.99/mo or $99/year service. More info at the eero site.

    All in all, though a big outlay cost-wise (thanks BestBuy for the 12 mos same as cash option, though!), the whole household is very happy and data is streaming along. No more dead spots, no more slow downs (except those caused by Comcast themselves), and easy administration.