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It’s Not Just The Google Home Max: Chromecast Also Appears To Be Killing Wi-Fi Networks

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Just as technology manufacturers and users are still reeling from the threat of Spectre and Meltdown, a new bug is reportedly affecting Wi-Fi networks.

Previously, reports from various users claimed that Google's Home Max is the cause of wireless connectivity blackouts in some homes. Initial investigations note that the search company's smart speaker creates a problem with TP-link brand routers. Other users narrowed it down to a specific model, the Archer C7.

However updated complaints from more users likewise include other brands like Synology, Asus, Netgear, Synology, Linksys, and more. Those affected reported a temporary loss of internet connection with various other details.

Speculation Of Possible Causes

Google might have a better chance of pinpointing the exact cause of the Wi-Fi issue if it was limited to the Google Home Max. Yet, it seems that other products from the search firm also exhibit the same problems with user's wireless routers.

The Chromecast 4K and regular models have been reportedly observed to encounter the same issue with wireless connectivity between the connected routers. Both Linksys and TP-Link likewise independently notified its customers that the apparent cause of these interruptions is indeed Google Cast devices.

Additionally, a few individuals similarly suspect that the Android Oreo update for some smartphones replicates the same problem.

Research Results

Due to the bevy of complaints from their users, TP-Link had its network engineers figure out the likely cause for loss of connectivity. Product experts from the router company cited that Google Home Max and other similar devices are indeed at fault.

The engineers noted that the Google devices involved reportedly broadcast large amounts of packets within a short duration. In theory, the amount of data received by the router floods its memory, which ideally requires a reboot to resolve connectivity problem encountered.

Vendors Take Action

Until Google pushes out a fix for the Home Max and other devices, router manufacturers issued firmware patches of their own. TP-Link reportedly released a beta firmware to mitigate the wireless blackout issue caused by the aforementioned devices.

Some users confirm that the patch solves their issues, while others continue to experience the same symptoms.

Google's Response

A number of vendors have reached out to Google regarding their findings. However, the company has yet to acknowledge that the Wi-Fi problem stems from its end.

Last year, there were some reports regarding the connectivity issues encountered by Pixel 2 and Pixel users. It appears that the firm's flagship smartphones had trouble communicating with mesh routers.

Whatever the reasons, analysts are confident that Google will come up with a fix soon.

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