In our internet-connected homes, we all rely on this little appliance to act as the gatekeeper for data that comes in and out of our abodes. It is the access point for all our gadgets, wired and wireless, for their internet data needs and connections.
I am talking about the router, of course, and unfortunately, it looks like it's the end of the line for this particular popular router brand.
According to a report from Bloomberg, Apple has disbanded its wireless router division. The report also revealed that the engineers who were responsible for products like the AirPort Express, the AirPort Extreme, and the AirPort Time Capsule have been transferred to other internal product development teams, including the one developing for the Apple TV.
The report also suggests that Apple's move to kill off its router division will allow the company to focus more on its other consumer products. Apple's router business doesn't generate as much revenue as their other products and is merely bundled with the Apple Watch and the Apple TV within the "other products" category in its financial statements.
The writing was already on the wall for these products the past few years since Apple's router line hasn't been updated since 2013. Specification wise, these models are starting to lag behind other competing brands.
However, they still have their share of dedicated fans since Apple's AirPort routers are considered to be some of the easiest to set up and they come with features that cater specifically to Mac users.
For example, the $99 AirPort Express has an audio-out connection for AirPlay music streaming while the $299 AirPort Time Capsule allows for automatic wireless Time Machine backups with its built-in storage.
While these features may still be appealing to Mac and iOS users, the disbandment of the AirPort team signifies that Apple no longer has plans of producing newer versions of its routers and it puts future firmware updates for these existing devices in jeopardy.
If you are in the market for a new router, you may want to look at this list of the best routers of 2016 we picked just for you.