The new Apple AirPort Extreme Base Station and Time Capsule resemble each other.
(Credit: Apple)The new AirPort Extreme Base Station and the new Time Capsule share exactly the same shape, which is a completely new "top-down approach to design," compared with previous generations. Instead of the traditional squarish shape that's been used for years, they now look like a rectangle standing 6.6 inches tall and 3.85 inches wide. This design helps shrink the devices' footprint by 75 percent, while retaining the same element of style. Other than that, they are very similar to the previous models in terms of port offerings. Both support Gigabit Ethernet with three LAN ports and one WAN port, and come with one USB 2.0 port to host a printer or an external hard drive. Neither has a standard AirPlay audio port, which was first introduced with the latest AirPort Express that came out a year ago. The only difference that the new Time Capsule has over the new AirPort Extreme Base Station is the internal hard drive of either 2TB or 3TB. These capacities are also the current options available in the existing Time Capsule. The Time Capsule's internal storage can be used to share data between connected devices as well as the Time Machine backup destination.The new MacBook Air and a new Base Station, the first 802.11ac-enabled devices from Apple.
(Credit: Apple)Apple's new networking devices both support true dual-band Wi-Fi and work with all existing Wi-Fi clients, regardless of their Wi-Fi standard. You do need to use a 802.11ac-enabled clients to take advance of the new and much faster 802.11ac data speeds. Apart from two Wi-Fi networks (one for each band), the two devices also support two guest networks to offers Internet connection without access to local resources. Both are designed to be managed and set up via AirPort Utility, available both in desktop and mobile app versions. Neither offers a Web interface, which generally provides more customization options. Apple's new 802.11ac-enabled Base Stations are available now. The AiPort Extreme Base Station is US$199, and the Time Capsule is US$299 or US$399 for 2TB or 3TB capacities, respectively. Check back soon for full reviews.