Airport Goes 802.11ac: New Routers; AirPort Utility 6.3, Firmware 7.7.1 Updates
A busy, busy Monday for Apple, Tim Cook et al and, happily enough, there was much goodness for the Mac, too, including new 802.11ac Airport hardware, software and firmware. Further, Apple has also modestly trimmed refurbished Airport. Step inside for details.
First off, Apple introduced and shipped the AirPort Extreme Base Station ($199) and AirPort Time Capsule (2TB, 3TB from $299), which both feature 802.11ac (a.k.a. gigabit) wi-fi and that delivers 3X the throughput of 802.11n at the same range. The company didn’t, however, update its Airport Express Base Station.
And, yes, Apple has also updated its AirPort Utility and Firmware for 802.11ac and tweak security.
• AirPort Utility 6.3 for Mac (download)
— Use AirPort Utility to set up and manage your 802.11n and 802.11ac AirPort base stations, including AirPort Express, Extreme, and Time Capsule. AirPort Utility 6.3 allows you to configure and manage the new AirPort Extreme and AirPort Time Capsule with 802.11ac Wi-Fi, and includes enhanced remote management capabilities.
— Requires OS X 10.7.5 or later, OS X 10.8.3 or later
• AirPort Base Station and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.1 (Check Software Update)
— This update is for AirPort Extreme and AirPort Time Capsule base stations with 802.11ac. It resolves a rare issue that may cause the hard drive in AirPort Time Capsule or a hard drive connected via USB to become unresponsive.
— For all 802.11n capable AirPort base stations and Time Capsules
— Security content when available
That said, Apple has modestly trimmed refurbished Airport prices. For example, the Extreme Base Station price has been reduced by $4.