Tuesday hard drive manufacturer Western Digital (WD) revealed the WD Livewire Powerline AV Network Kit, a setup that establishes a home network using electrical outlets, and could eliminate the need to string Ethernet cables throughout the home or office. This solution could also boost network reliability in areas outside a wireless router's range.
According to the company, the kit provides two 4-port HomePlug AV adapters and data transfer speeds of up to 200Mbps. One adapter plugs into the user's (required) Ethernet router and an electrical outlet. The other adapter is plugged into another electrical outlet elsewhere in the office or home. WD said that users should expect to see "glitch-free playback of Full-HD 1080p video streams" on up to seven connected devices.
"Wireless networks, while popular, don't always deliver the reliable high-speed connections needed to sustain HD video streaming," said Dale Pistilli, vice president of marketing for WD's branded products group. "Meanwhile, drilling holes for new Ethernet cables is complicated, expensive and messy. With the WD Livewire Powerline AV Network Kit, it's truly easy to enjoy all the HD streaming and broadband Internet capabilities of these great new devices anywhere there is an electrical outlet."
In addition to the two adapters, the kit also includes two Ethernet cables, two power cables, software and a 1-year limited warranty. The kit is HomePlug AV certified, IEEE 802.3 and IEEE 802.3u compliant, and is available now online and offline for $139.99 USD.