If you’re like most people, you connect to the Internet at home using a WiFi connection. Since most of your devices—whether they’re smart phones, tablets, or laptops—are designed to be used wirelessly, the only way to get online with them is by connecting them to the device that provides the WiFi signal in your home.
This device is usually called a router, but you might also hear it called a gateway, a modem, or an access point. The name doesn’t really matter, but the device itself has a big impact on the quality of your home WiFi.
If you’re not getting the performance you expect, the first thing to check is whether your router is based on old technology. If files take forever to download, streaming videos don’t display smoothly, and you have trouble connecting to WiFi in some areas of your home, then there’s a good chance an old router is the culprit.
All routers are NOT created equal
The fact is, all routers are not created equal. If your router is even just a few years old, it’s out of date. And that means you are not getting the most out of the new wireless devices you’ve invested in, which are designed to work best when they’re using the latest WiFi technology.
It also means you’re not getting your money’s worth from your Internet service, because your old router is preventing you from getting the speed and performance you’re paying for.
New technology, better performance
So why are the new WiFi routers so much better? They’re based on new technology (the 802.11ac standard) that offers major performance improvements you’ll really notice when you’re online. (And there is an even newer standard hitting the scenes in 2019 – 802.11ax – that promises even better performance.)
First of all, these new routers are faster. The maximum speed provided by routers based on the old standards (802.11b/g/n) is 450 Megabits per second or less. The new routers are capable of providing speeds greater than 6,000 Megabits per second (or 6 Gigabits per second).
While you won’t always get the maximum speeds possible, an up-to-date router can be up to 12 times faster than routers using old technology. This makes a noticeable difference, especially when you’re downloading large files from the Internet, gaming online, file sharing within your network, or watching a movie from a streaming service like Netflix. This even applies when two, three or four people are connected to your home WiFi at the same time.
The latest routers also give you better range, which means you enjoy a better Internet experience even when you’re far away from your router. They do this using a new technology that detects where a device is and then sending a stronger signal in the direction of that device (dynamic beam-forming).
Contact your service provider today
As you can see, the latest routers provide some big advantages and improvements over WiFi routers that are using old technology. So if you’re not happy with the performance of the WiFi in your home, contact your service provider. They’ll help you figure out if your router is using old technology and replace it with a new model that will give you the best performance possible.