There's a crowdfunding project over on Indiegogo called "Soap," an intelligent router that runs on Android 4.4 "KitKat" and has a built-in touchscreen. The team behind this router is looking to score a mere $42,500 USD, and has managed to snag 56 percent of the goal. As of this writing, the project still has 22 days to go.
There are actually four routers in the Soap family: the Soap Solo, the Soap Dual, the Soap Quad and the Soap 8.4. The names hint to what's inside the box: a Freescale i.MX6 Solo processor, a Freescale iMX6 Dual, and a Freescale iMX6 Quad that's inside the Soap Quad and the Soap 8.4.
In addition to the processors, the Soap Solo packs 1 GB of RAM and 8 GB of internal storage. The Soap Dual has 2 GB of RAM and 32 GB of internal storage, as does the Soap Quad. The Soap 8.4 has 2 GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal storage, and an additional 128 GB SSD. The Soap Solo, Soap Dual and Soap Quad all have 7-inch touch screens, while the Soap 8.4 has a larger 8.4-inch screen.
The network routers will ship with four exclusive apps: Soap Automation that serves as the home automation hub; Soap Guardian for monitoring children on the network; Soap Security to protect the home network; and Soap Wi-Fi, which is the router's control panel. These routers are also compatible with home automation protocols including ZigBee, Z-Wave, Insteon, Bluetooth 4.0, X10 RF, 433 MHz and more. Thus the Soap Automation app has the ability to control all the connected devices in the home or office. Users can even close the garage door by using Apple's Siri.
A list of external ports includes one Gigabit WAN, four Gigabit LAN, one USB 2.0 port, HDMI output, and two USB 3.0 ports (on the side). The routers are also Wireless AC compatible, meaning users can see speeds up to 1.3 Gbps on the 5.0 GHz band using a Wireless AC device. These routers actually have two Wi-Fi chipsets, with the second set serving the Wireless N crowd with speeds up to 150 Mbps.
"The primary WiFi chipset has three external SMA antenna ports for increasing reception," reads the page. "The secondary WiFi chipset has one internal PCB antenna and one external SMA connector for antenna extension for reception."
Not to worry: even if the OS looks like a forked version of Android, owners will have full access to Google Play. Users can install Netflix, Pandora Radio, iHeartRadio, Twitter and more directly onto the routers. There will also be dedicated Soap apps for iOS 7 and iOS 8, Android devices and Windows for remote access.
For more information about the new Soap routers, head here.