Are Fonera’s Worth It?

Talking to Bernie in Kilkenny earlier today mentioned the FON routers in conversations, something I’ve looked at before – primarily as a cheap means to getting a wireless router into the house so I don’t have to worry about drilling through walls and doing a bit of wiring…

So at the price they are – รขโ€šยฌ39 odd plus shipping, are they worth it? I’ve read all about the service behind it, sharing your wifi connection, picking up free wifi in places in return, but has anyone had any problems quality-wise? Signal drops? Routers just going on the fritz, exploding, dying for no apparent reason, replacing them a few times?

Any bad points on them before I click purchase?


  1. Niall O'Brien April 17, 2007 at 5:11 pm

    Stop being cheap and get yourself a good wifi router that’ll last years! ๐Ÿ˜›
    The Linksys WRT-54G is a popular choice and you can always flash it with far better firmware if you wish! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Ken McGuire April 17, 2007 at 5:33 pm

    Some days I’ve got money – some days I don’t! They’ve got that one at around 80 bucks on komplett…. I’m looking for the cheap and cheerful under 40-quid variety but if its a sturdy one, might be worth a look.

    Just a damn shame that the apple airport extreme is so damn expensive!

  3. Evert Bopp April 18, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    All I can say is that you get what you pay for…


  4. Bernie Goldbach April 19, 2007 at 8:43 am

    Now, ask that Niall guy if he’s got a robust wifi router.

    Then ask that Niall guy for the price point of the wifi router he uses regularly every day.

    I think inexpensive things can do the trick but don’t detract from the value you get from a WRT-54G.

  5. Ken McGuire April 19, 2007 at 10:01 am

    Well Niall….. ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’ve a feeling I’ll edge towards that WRT-54G, or something similar. I’d splash for the Airport Extreme Base Station but at 179 bucks thats still a tad on the way-too-expensive side.

    I’d say the Fonera would do the trick as well but I don’t want to end up replacing it or anything in a few months time, knowing that for the price I’d pay for two Fonera’s I’d quite possibly get a better router overall…

  6. Evert Bopp April 19, 2007 at 3:17 pm


    I am not going to “pimp my wares” here but if you want to hear about something that far out-performs a Linksys or Fonera but costs less than an Airport base-station I am more than willing to give you some advice..


  7. Ken McGuire April 19, 2007 at 3:29 pm

    If you’re willing to part with the advice then I’m willing to open my ears!

  8. Evert Bopp April 19, 2007 at 6:11 pm

    I have worked with a variety of wifi routers over the last few yars and have had my hands on most hardware out there at some point. Based on my personal experience I can recommend the Ruckus Wireless routers as the bets available devices.
    They might be a bot tricky to configure but once up and running there is nothing that comes close in coverage, throughput and stability…
    And yes; i DO sell them.


  9. Ken McGuire April 19, 2007 at 11:43 pm

    Nothing like getting a plug in for your own gear. And how much would one expect to pay for a Ruckus Wireless router this neck of the woods?

  10. Ken McGuire April 19, 2007 at 11:43 pm

    Just caught a picture…. did I see one of those sneaking around downstairs in the meet/food area in Barcamp Waterford?

  11. Evert Bopp April 20, 2007 at 6:48 pm

    Yes indeed.
    I sent a fw out to Barcamp Waterford for testing purposes.
    Apparently they only needed one to cover the whole area..


    P.S. You’re in Cork, right?

  12. Ken McGuire April 20, 2007 at 7:45 pm

    Nay Evert, a few weekends in Cork now and again maybe but I’m a Kilkenny man out and out. One to cover the area? Small enough area but didn’t hear of many problems down that way. I’d anticipate no more than six machines connected, three wired, three wireles, majority being mine as I’d be greedy for access around house. Maybe get an Apple TV to run off it in a few months time, watch if the price drops a bit…

  13. Evert Bopp April 22, 2007 at 10:41 am


    Drop me an email with a phonenumber and I’ll call you to arrange for one to be sent out to you for testing. If you don’t like it you can just send it back…


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