National broadband provider iiNet has started selling the second major version of its popular BoB integrated routers, as well as a wireless bridge which aims to link customers’ loungeroom media centres with their Internet connections.
The company’s ‘BoB2’ device is an integrated router supporting the ADSL2+ standard, as well as the latest 802.11n Wi-Fi standard and dual VoIP capability to support two phone numbers from two providers through its included handset. The handset sports a full colour screen and a built-in touch panel answering machine.
iiNet has also specified that customers using the router will be able to use it to connect with the ISP’s FetchTV service, which it is limiting to customers with certain routers due to the stringent requirements of online streaming video. It also offers a range of other features common to modern ADSL routers and even supports the incoming IPv6 standard.
Following the release of BoB Lite, iiNet’s first device to be designed, built and distributed internally, the development of BoB2 was announced last February. At that time iiNet had said the device would have been released by April. However, in April iiNet Labs general manager Steve Harley said the BoB2 had been delayed to make sure it was sporting the latest technologies and that work was back on track to deliver it by June.
Harley today praised the new router in a statement issued by iiNet yesterday. “More than 4500 customers told us what they wanted from a modem router and BoB2 is the result. I don’t know the word for better than awesome, but BoB2 is it,” he said.
iiNet also today announced the availability of its Wireless Bridge product, which sits between any of the routers in the BoB line and customers’ FetchTV set-top boxes in their loungeroom, facilitating wireless streaming of HD-quality video over the 5GHz wireless frequency and the 802.11 standard.
The BoB2 device is available to new and existing iiNet customers for $279 outright or $199 on a 24 month contract, while the wireless bridge will go for $119 for a pair of the devices.
The BoB line appears to have been a success with iiNet’s customers since it first launched in mid-2009, with iiNet revealing in February 2010, for example, that it was selling about 4,000 units per month of the original integrated router, manufactured at that stage in coalition with Belkin. Since that time, iiNet has launched a ‘lite’ version of the BoB router and taken manufacturing of the devices in-house.
Delimiter’s review of the BoB Lite earlier this year criticised the router for shipping in an insecure state, as well as not featuring the top-of-the-line features that power users might want. However, it praised the router for being priced well for the market and being easy to set up.
Image credit: iiNet