FutureFive New Zealand logo
Consumer technology news from the future
Story image

Hands-on review: D-Link DWR-956 4G LTE Wi-Fi AC1200 router

By Darren Price
Fri 1 May 2020
FYI, this story is more than a year old

It’s quite possible, with the kids at home and you working from home, that the ADSL internet connection isn’t cutting the mustard these days. Or maybe you need access to internet supplied by your company to work at home. Maybe you just need a portable office setup that affords you both wireless internet and a phone line. 

Good news, D-Link has you covered. The D-Link DWR-956 4G LTE Wi-Fi AC1200 router is a voice-over-IP 3G/4G modem and an ethernet router for fixed-line internet. It’s pretty versatile, and it needs to be in these uncertain times.

The router uses a full-size SIM which is inserted into the side of the device. As your phone likely uses a nano or microSIM, you may need to push it back into the plastic template that you got with it or get a new SIM.

The DWR-956 is a modem router, as so can be used to control your existing network, providing Wi-Fi from your fixed-line, be it ADSL, cable, NBN or UFB, just using the 4G as a back-up. The phone socket means that you can plug a regular phone in and use VoIP for your home/office phone if your ISP supports it.

Set-up is easy. D-Link’s wizards are some of the easiest I’ve used. You simply plug the device into your PC/laptop via the included ethernet cable and type the IP address of the device (as written in the enclosed quick start instructions), and you are away. The wizard sets up your Wi-Fi network with a few questions, and VoIP, if you have the information available from your ISP. 

The DWR-956 frontend was a bit of surprise, as D-Link has given the device’s web control panel a colourful update. The menus are now laid out even more clearly with settings easier to find.

The device’s form-factor is similar to D-Link’s Talkbox routers in that the DWR-956 is designed to be stood upright. There’s no way to remove the feet in order to mount the device on the wall.

This is probably not as bad for a device that’ll likely be utilised in a more portable manner than a standard router, but the option would be good.

Being an AC1200 router, it’s not designed for heavy Wi-Fi use. It does have both 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz channels providing decent Wi-Fi coverage suitable for single room/small home use. Wired directly to the router I was able to get access to the maximum 4G speed for my area, which, even at 30% signal strength was significantly faster than ADSL (and my old cable internet speed).

The router has all the usual functions to set up port forwarding and a DMZ. It does lack some of the more advanced features usually found in routers aimed towards gaming/multimedia such as device prioritising, but unless you are into serious competitive gaming, this shouldn’t be an issue.

There are parental controls built into the device. internet access for client devices, such as game consoles, laptops and phones can be scheduled for set times of the day/days of the week. Access to certain websites can also be restricted.

The D-Link DWR-956 4G LTE Wi-Fi AC1200 router is an easy-to-use solution for working at home. You can use a company SIM as opposed to your home internet. 4G is also faster than ADSL and thus more appropriate for a home office, especially if competing with the kids’ homeschooling or the family watching Netflix. 

The device’s functionality as a standard Wi-Fi router also makes it useful for small homes and offices with a 3G/4G internet backup if needed.

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Commerce Commission
ComCom puts electronics sector on notice over resale price maintenance
The Commerce Commission has concluded an investigation into allegations that television manufacturers were engaging in illegal resale price maintenance.
Story image
Review
Hands-on review: Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance Starter Kit A60
Philips’ range of Hue smart lighting promises to make any home a smart home. Techday’s Darren Price checks out the Philips Hue White and Color Ambiance Starter Kit A60.
Story image
N4L
N4L, Spark, Chorus partner for Hyperfibre school upgrade
Networks for Learning (N4L) has partnered with Spark and Chorus to upgrade Wellington College to Hyperfibre, fostering stronger outcomes for students and teachers.
Story image
Electricity
Canstar finds Flick Electric NZ’s favourite provider
Canstar’s annual research to find New Zealand’s favourite electricity provider reveals Flick Electric has come out on top.
Story image
Broadband
Mercury launches broadband and fibre packages for NZ customers
Mercury has officially launched Mercury Broadband, giving its electricity and gas customers the ability to add fibre to their existing Mercury account.
Story image
Digital Transformation
Publicis Sapient and The Man Cave drive digital transformation for mental health
Publicis Sapient and The Man Cave are joining forces to help support the mental health and wellbeing of young men around the world.
Story image
Gaming
Game preview: The Quarry (PC)
On playing a bit of The Quarry, I began to understand why the game has got its own release rather than just being part of The Dark Pictures Anthology.
Story image
Cloud
Apple reveals new iOS 16 features set to enhance sharing and communication
Apple has unveiled an all-new Lock Screen experience and new ways to share and communicate in iOS 16.
Story image
Cloud
Sony launches LinkBuds S - the latest model in the series
Sony says the LinkBuds S will give users a unique sound experience through sensor and spatial sound technology, even in AR games.
Story image
Cloud
Apple announces new developer tools and APIs for better app experiences
The new announcement encompasses new tools, technologies and APIs that the company says are designed to help developers create better and more involved experiences for their users.
Story image
Robotic Process Automation / RPA
Automated Guided Vehicles at seaports to grow 26% by 2027
ABI Research says the global use of Automated Guided Vehicles in seaports will exceed 150,000 deployments by 2027. Port authorities are also looking into 5G private networks.
Story image
Privacy Commissioner
Aotearoa gets a new Privacy Commissioner: Michael Webster replaces John Edwards
Michael Webster, who is currently the Secretary of the Cabinet, will step into the Privacy Commissioner role on 5 July 2022.
Story image
Wireless
Hands-on review: JBL Quantum 610 Wireless
The new Quantum 610 gaming headset is the latest addition to JBL’s Quantum range and the successor to its popular Quantum 600 model.
Story image
Wireless
Hands-on review: HyperX Pulsefire Haste wireless mouse and HyperX Pulsefire XL Mat
With its lightweight Pulsefire Haste wireless mouse and RGB lit Pulsefire XL Mat, HyperX sets out to up your game and add a little colour to your desktop.
Story image
Digital Transformation
SAP partners with New Zealand Rugby for digital transformation
The multi-year partnership will see SAP advance NZR with its organisational operations, team performance, fan experience and sustainability goals.
Story image
Review
Hands-on review: Morphée
Life in the twenty-first century has become a 24-hour affair. Morphée promises to help restore some balance to your life.
Story image
Cloud
Apple improves Mac operating system with latest offering
Apple has unveiled the latest version of its desktop operating system, macOS Ventura, providing users with tools for greater productivity.
Story image
Wireless
ComCom finds NZ broadband compares well with Australia
A new report published by the Commerce Commission has found New Zealand's Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) compares well to Australia's National Broadband Network.
Story image
Design
Hands-on review: Samsung S22 Ultra
I have been impressed by the functions Samsung packed into this phone. I did actually make one phone call on this phone, in between trying out as many of its other uses that I could pack in.
Story image
Skills shortage
Tech salaries increase as skills shortage inflates expectations
More technology professionals will receive a pay rise this coming financial year than last, with skills shortages creating a once-in-a-career market.
Story image
Remote Working
Hands-on review: EcoFlow River Pro Portable Power station
We get hands-on with an extremely versatile device that every remote worker or outdoor enthusiast should consider.
Story image
Cloud
Linktree Marketplace creates new commerce options for creators
Linktree has launched Linktree Marketplace, a new forum for users to discover all of Linktree's partners, Link Apps, and integrations in one place.
Story image
Terramaster
TerraMaster launches its T6-423 Professional NAS with TOS 5 OS
Shenzhen-based data storage manufacturer, TerraMaster, has launched the T6-423 6-bay tower NAS.
Story image
Gaming
Game review: The Quarry (PC)
Supermassive Games channel 1980s teen horror movies with their latest suspense-filled cinematic adventure, The Quarry.
Story image
Cloud
Apple brings redesigned MacBook Air and updated MacBook Pro to market
Apple has introduced a redesigned MacBook Air and an updated 13-inch MacBook Pro, both powered by the new M2 chip.
Story image
Gaming
AMD introduces FSR 2.0 giving gaming GPUs a boost
Not only have AMD proudly announced their new line-up of Radeon RX 6000-series graphics cards, but the company has also unveiled the first games to support its FSR 2.0 technology.
Story image
Cloud
TUANZ to address rural connectivity at 2022 symposium
TUANZ is hosting the Rural Connectivity Symposium for the first time in person since 2019, providing a forum to discuss the state of rural connectivity.
Story image
Cloud
Google announces new version of Chromecast with remote features
Google has announced its newest version of Chromecast, featuring a variety of new features and a new look.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Adobe launches AI-powered updates to Photoshop and Lightroom
Adobe says the updates use Adobe Sensei AI and machine learning to simplify complex workflows and streamline cross-device collaboration.
Story image
Cloud
Sony expands X-Series portable speaker range with three new models
The company says the SRS-XG300, SRS-XE300 and SRS-XE200 all contain high-quality and powerful sound pressure due to X-Balanced Speaker Units.
Story image
Cloud
Dynabook refreshes Portégé X30L series with the Portégé X30L-K
The new model contains hybrid-architecture Intel 12th Gen Core P-Series 28W processor options, Wi-Fi 6E, along with Intel Iris Xe graphics.
Story image
Wireless
WolfVision releases new Cynap Pure Mini screen sharing solution
WolfVision has launched the WolfVision Cynap Pure Mini, a new wireless screen sharing solution that looks to enable easier and more effective presentations.
Story image
Cloud
Chorus and Nokia launches first trial of 25G PON broadband
Chorus and Nokia have announced the successful demonstration of 25 gigabit per second fibre (Gbps) broadband technology at the Chorus Fibre Lab in Auckland. 
Story image
Cloud
Microsoft NZ and TupuToa to boost diversity in cybersecurity sector
Microsoft NZ has teamed up with TupuToa to co-develop a cyber security employment programme specifically aimed at creating more diversity in Aotearoa's cybersecurity sector.
Story image
Entelar
How TruSens air purifiers can create healthier workspaces
The pandemic has heightened our awareness of our own and others’ health, and made us all much more conscious of the environments we work in.
Story image
Apple
Apple’s watchOS 9 and its new features, including a medications app
The new watch0S 9 gives users more watch faces, an updated workout and sleep app and a brand new medications app.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Why is NZ lagging behind the world in cybersecurity?
A recent report by TUANZ has revealed that we are ranked 56th in the world when it comes to cybersecurity - a look into why we're so behind and what needs to be done.
Story image
Cloud
Apple unveils M2 with 50% more memory bandwidth than M1
Compared to M1, M2 has an 18% faster CPU, a 35% more powerful GPU, a 40% faster Neural Engine, and delivers 50% more memory bandwidth and up to 24GB of fast unified memory.
Story image
Film review
Film review: Jurassic World Dominion
This movie is what happens when you cross a lot of hungry dinos with humanity trying desperately to redeem itself for a mistake, and boy does it try.
Story image
InternetNZ
Govt must step up to police social media - InternetNZ boss
A technology industry leader is urging the government not to shy away from policing social media platforms in New Zealand.
Story image
Phishing
WhatsApp and QR codes the next scam threat - report
KnowBe4 has warned it expects to see an increase in QR Codes and the WhatsApp chat platform being used for phishing and other scams. 
Story image
Cloud
Adobe Substance 3D updates, looks to the metaverse
A look at all of Adobe's major updates for Substance 3D and how its services are enabling businesses to get metaverse ready.
Story image
Dark web
Cybercrime in Aotearoa: How does New Zealand law define it?
‘Cybercrime’ is a term we hear all the time, but what exactly is it, and how does New Zealand define it in legal terms?
Story image
Cloud
Microsoft launches the Surface Laptop Go 2 with new features
Microsoft has introduced the new Surface Laptop Go 2, adding to the company’s growing portfolio of Surface Laptop devices.