Wednesday, March 09, 2016

My 2014 AirPort Extreme just died.

I liked the ME918LL/A AirPort Extreme for 17 months. It covered most of our house with a single device and it was pretty reliable. Around 17 months it started to spontaneously power down. I suspect an issue with the power supply, Apple has a long history of wonky power supply problems.

I wouldn't be surprised if there's eventually a recall program. I purchased it with an AMEX card, so I’ll now see how good their extended warranty program is. (It used to be quite good, but AMEX has outsourced the program. If it fails me on this one I’ll deprecate my AMEX card.)

In the meanwhile, sadly, I’ve ordered another Airport Extreme. (Sigh.) I really couldn’t find a better option — Eero is quite expensive, unproven, and it comes from a startup that’s got a 20% chance of surviving. Google's hardware is outsourced and of unproven quality.

Apple’s Airport Express has a great reputation of reliability. If you can make do with the Express I’d recommend it over the Extreme. If you live in a country that mandates 2 year warranties then the Extreme is a good buy. If you live in the US either use an extended warranty credit cards or pay extra for Apple Care. Once you add the Apple Care costs the Extreme is more expensive than Google’s router.

Yes, WiFi services suck. They really shouldn’t. I need an electrical engineer to explain to me why so many of my WiFi solutions last 1-2 years. (I have a 6+ yo Airport Express still running …)

PS. Interesting that Amazon no longer sells the Airport Extreme or the Express. I had to buy direct from Apple.

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