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ASUS Release DSL-AC88U – One of the First G.fast Broadband WiFi Routers

Wednesday, February 15th, 2017 (10:34 am) - Score 7,946

Technology firm ASUS has this week become one of the first major manufacturers to officially release a G.fast integrated wireless broadband router (DSLAC88U), which also offers integrated ADSL/VDSL2, WiFi speeds of up to 3167Mbps and will cost you a small fortune.

As most people know Openreach (BT) are currently rolling out their ‘up to’ 330Mbps capable G.fast (ITU G.9700/9701) broadband technology to a pilot of 138,000 UK premises by the end of March 2017, before expanding to 10 million premises by 2020 (details). Initially this will revolve around a two box solution where the end user is supplied with a G.fast modem (Huawei MT992) that can be plugged into a separate wireless router.

However we eventually expect G.fast to be integrated into many more wireless routers just as the ADSL and VDSL2 (FTTC) technologies are today, although it may take time for the costs to come down enough before we see wider adoption. Not to mention that any such routers would also have be validated via BT’s tricky testing regime before ISPs can use them.

In the meantime a number of router manufacturers are working to build G.fast equipped routers, with AVM’s FRITZ!Box 7582 due in mid-2017 and Billion also known to be working on something similar. Never the less ASUS has now confirmed that their previously unveiled DSL-AC88U will be one of the first to market when it launches in the UK during the “first week” of March 2017 for an SRP of £219.99.

The router appears to support pretty much everything you could want at that price and it uses a seemingly strong Broadcom modem, although we’d caution against buying one until somebody has had a chance to test it on a real G.fast line in the United Kingdom. The first run of any new technology can often be imperfect or may miss some vital features. It’s also not exactly the smallest piece of kit.

Full Specification for the DSL-AC88U

Network Standard
IEEE 802.11a, IEEE 802.11b, IEEE 802.11g, IEEE 802.11n, IEEE 802.11ac, IPv4, IPv6

Wi-Fi Data Rate
802.11a : 6,9,12,18,24,36,48,54 Mbps
802.11b : 1, 2, 5.5, 11 Mbps
802.11g : 6,9,12,18,24,36,48,54 Mbps
802.11n : up to 600 Mbps
802.11n TurboQAM : up to 800 Mbps
802.11ac : up to 1734 Mbps
1024QAM (2.4GHz) : up to 1000 Mbps
1024QAM (5GHz) : up to2167 Mbps

xDSL Data Rate
G.fast Upstream: 500Mbps, Downstream: 900Mbps
VDSL2 profile 35b Upstream: 100Mbps, Downstream: 300Mbps
VDSL2 profile 30a Upstream: 100Mbps, Downstream: 200Mbps
VDSL profile 17a Upstream:50Mbps, Downstream:100Mbps
VDSL profile 12a,12b Upstream:22Mbps, Downstream:68Mbps
VDSL profile 8a,8b,8c,8d Upstream:16Mbps, Downstream:50Mbps
ADSL2 Upstream: 3.3Mbps, Downstream: 24Mbps
ADSL2 Upstream: 3.5Mbps, Downstream: 12Mbps

‧DHCP server, firewall/NAT, DynDNS
‧VPN server(PPTP/Open VPN)
‧VPN client(PPTP/L2TP/Open VPN)
‧Dual WAN Fail over/Fail back
‧Quality of Service (QoS)
‧DSL feedback mechanism
‧Save/Resotre configuration file

Detachable dBi antenna x 4

LED Indicator
Power, VDSL, Internet, LAN x 2, 5 GHz Wi-Fi, 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi, USB x 1, E-WAN

WPS Button, Reset Button, Power Button, Wireless on/off Button, LED on/off Button

1 x RJ11 for xDSL
4 x RJ45 10/100/1000/Gigabits BaseT for LAN
1 x RJ45 10/100/1000/Gigabits BaseT for WAN
USB Ports
USB 2.0 x 1
USB 3.0 x 1

USB Applications
Printer Server
FTP Server
Download Master
3G/4G sharing

Operating Frequency

Operation Channel
13 Europe (ETSI)


Web-based GUI configuration
Firmware upgraded, configuration data uploaded and downloaded via Web-based GUI
Auto VPI/VCI detection
Configuration backup and restore

VPN Support
PPTP Pass-Through
OpenVPN server
PPTP client
L2TP client
OpenVPN client

Power Adapter
AC Input : 110 ~240 V(50~60HZ)
DC Output : 19 V/3.42 A

292 x 180 x 61 ~ mm (WxDxH) (Without Bezel)

795 g (Device Only)

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By Mark Jackson
Mark is a professional technology writer, IT consultant and computer engineer from Dorset (England), he also founded ISPreview in 1999 and enjoys analysing the latest telecoms and broadband developments. Find me on Twitter, , Facebook and Linkedin.
Leave a Comment
14 Responses
  1. Tom says:

    Wondering if this will support Sky Fiber!!

    1. JSN says:

      With Merlin firmware it will. Not sure if option 61 for DHCP (what sky call MER) is in the default firmware.

    2. Asylum_Seeker says:

      Merlin fw is usually for standalone routers only (eg RT-AC88U). The stock Asus fw for the DSL-AC88U should support Sky MER as their previous model DSL-AC68U supports it. This latest model uses Broadcom modem chipset so should be a lot more stable than the DS-AC68U which has the rubbish Mediatek.

    3. babis3g says:

      Indeed will have Sky fiber support for this model, current UK field test result indicates that it got problem, working on a solution for it

    4. yioob says:

      i can confirm it will work with sky fiber but asus are working on making it better as there were some problems with g.inp on some exchanges leading to no ip conection but i am using one and it is working keep an eye on firmware updates build 350 current

  2. Eccles says:

    I’ll wait for an international version of the FRITZ!Box 7582 as that supports DECT and VoIP and my 7390 has been a pretty solid router for the last 6 years.

    1. yioob says:

      love my 7490 fritz box but it has been demoted to pbx and wifi ap due to not having sky fiber dhcp 61 surport my 7390 pbx was poor over pstn calling so sent it back but tryed the 7490 no problems with its calls 😀

  3. Willy says:

    Asus plan on blocking telnet access and the Broadcom CLI. Shocking for such an expensive piece of tech.

    3rd party firmware (Merlin/dd-wrt/open-wrt) does NOT work on the Asus DSL models.

  4. Chris says:

    Well, I don’t think the price is too bad for what you get. As far as I am aware the Asus routers tend to be feature rich. For ADSL today I use a Billion router (just as a modem) and that is rock solid – I would certainly buy Billion again. My router is a PC-Engines pfSense box and that will blow away anything on the consumer market in terms of configuration – sadly being based on FreeBSD it only supports wireless N. It was also slightly more expensive than the above router.

    It is horses for courses but for those running complex VPN configs pfSense is just fantastic, well worth looking at before blowing wads of cash on something else. Of course you will still need a modem and probably a decent wireless access point.

  5. Carter says:

    Maybe asus will finally get a xDSL router right, then again they have not done too good thus far with the DSL-AC55U, DSL-AC52U, DSL-N16 AND N16U, DSL-AC56U, DSL-N17U, DSL-AC68U AND THE DSL-N66U are all a right pile of dung. The AC68U and N66U have complaints on various websites about how rubbish they are. The others have the same complaints just have to dig further. I would not touch this transformers toy looking thing.

  6. Willy says:

    That’s right Carter that’s because all the previous Asus DSL models had a mediatek adsl/vdsl chipset. Asus are the only company I’ve seen with this vdsl chipset and it was utterly useless.

    This new model has a Broadcom chipset which will be night and day difference. I hope they kirsten though and provide telnet access so you can use all the chipsets features.

    1. Willy says:

      listen, even!

    2. alan says:

      Zyxel, TRENDnet and even Linksys at one point have all had mediatek chipset devices with no issues.

      Asus modems and routers are crap, or to be more fair their router only devices are better than combined modem/router devices and when they work they work well, but even a raft of router only devices from them including ones with broadcom chipsets have had issues.

      The RT-AC51U and RT-AC55U both router only devices and both (i think) with broadcom chipsets have issues with 5ghz wifi and the usb port regularly disconnecting.

      Personally id spend my money on devices with a better track record rather than either being superb or crap, worth it only for those that like a gamble or the lottery. Theres a reason Asus have what seems like millions of devices all of similar spec, they keep building new models hoping by luck rather than design it seems to get it right.

      Shame really as Asus build some top quality gear, their motherboards are not bad and they seem to be able to make a half decent mobile phone, as examples of what they often do right more than wrong.

  7. Wayne says:

    I’m having problems getting it working.
    I’m on sky dsl .
    And can’t get it to go online.
    Constantly getting message cannot find ISP.
    What am i missing.

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