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The Air Port Express, when connected to an Ethernet network, is designed to act as a wireless access point, like the Air Port Extreme and Air Port Time Capsule.
It supports 50 networked users and can be used to extend the range of an existing network.
It is compatible with 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, and 802.11ac specifications.
Apple's Air Port Time Capsule is a router/storage hybrid device that is designed to combine the full functionality of the Air Port Extreme base station with additional storage that is designed to run Apple's Time Machine backup software.
The software provides a graphical overview of both the Wi-Fi network and connected devices, allowing users to change base station and network settings.
Guest networks can also be initiated from Air Port Utility, offering a way to create a secondary network to avoid handing out Wi-Fi passwords.
The fifth-generation version, which supports the faster 802.11ac Wi-Fi protocol, debuted on during Apple's June 2012 Worldwide Developers Conference.
The Air Port Extreme's newfound height is designed to optimize range and signal strength by elevating the antennas while also facilitating beamforming, a function that automatically locates 802.11ac devices and targets Wi-Fi signals towards those devices for optimum performance.
The Air Port Extreme features three Gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, a USB 2.0 port for disk and printer sharing, a built-in file server, and support for Air Play.
Though the Air Port Extreme uses the same hardware as the Air Port Time Capsule, with space for a hard drive, it is not possible to connect a third party hard drive within the device.
Apple will be providing service and parts for the current-generation Air Port Base Stations for the next five years, and the company is sharing several support documents to assist customers who are transitioning away from the Air Port products.
Third-party router options such as the Linksys Velop have been available for purchase from Apple since early 2018.
With the Air Port Disk feature, users can plug a USB hard drive into the Air Port Extreme to function as a network-attached storage device for both Mac and Windows clients.