In simple terms, a Wi-Fi router is a device that transmits data from an internet company to smart gadgets like laptops, tablets, and smartphones. As the name implies, a router “routes” traffic from the internet service provider to your devices.
The internet and Wi-Fi routers have evolved drastically over the last two decades. The very first generation of internet routers was introduced in the year 1998 and back then, these gadgets could only provide speeds up to 2 Mbps. Thankfully, technology has improved significantly since 1998, and today, we can enjoy internet speeds that go as high as 940 Mbps.
How Does a Router Work?
Routers are the first line of security that prevents intrusion into a network. They facilitate modems to establish a network with your portable devices so you can enjoy smooth and constant connectivity to the internet. Nowadays, most routers support the 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard, which uses the 5GHz band and is capable of delivering speeds of at least 1000 Mbps.
Other than speed, these modern Wi-Fi routers are smart as well. The latest routers come with built-in security features to protect your network against cyber-attacks. In addition to this, some routers support technologies that enable strong wireless signals in areas and times when you need them the most.
How Many Types of Routers Are There?
There are two types of internet routers that you need to consider when it comes to establishing a secure network.
Wired internet routers connect directly to the computer through LAN cables. These routers usually come with two ports. One is used to establish an active internet connection with the service provider and the second is used to transmit data to your laptop or desktop device.
Wireless internet routers have built-in antennas that transmit radio signals to your devices. These routers are connected through cable wires to receive data from the service provider and then they communicate wirelessly to your home network to establish an active internet connection to and fro your smart devices.
How to Choose the Best Internet Router for Your Household?
Most internet service providers offer you a free modem and router when you sign up for their services with minimal rental fee. However, some providers charge a hefty amount for their equipment, therefore, it is important to figure out which option is more profitable and suitable for you.
Charter Spectrum, for instance, provides you with a free internet modem and router when you subscribe to their amazing plans. Plus, Spectrum internet prices are highly competitive and reasonable, so you do not have to worry about any hidden equipment costs with this provider. With that being said, let us discuss some essential factors that you need to consider when purchasing your internet router.
Wi-Fi Signals Coverage
When purchasing a router, measure the size of your home and then search for the routers that can transmit signals to all the rooms at your place. If the coverage area of your house is big, purchase a router that has a mesh network as it extends wireless signals to a larger area with minimum Wi-Fi dark spots.
Wireless Router Performance
Make sure that the router you purchase has the latest technology and firmware installed in it. MU-MIMO (Multi-User – Multiple Input – Multiple Output) is currently the most recent router technology available in the market. These routers have the ability to communicate and transmit high-speed internet to multiple devices simultaneously.
Router Safety and Security
Routers act as a wall of defense against cybercriminals. Therefore, never underestimate the power of a strong router that can defend your network from intruders. Always look for the built-in security features that come with a router. These features include firmware, device quarantine, and automatic updates.
Wi-Fi Usability and Controls
Do not purchase a complex router that you do not understand and cannot operate. The controls and usability of the router matter a lot when you have to configure the settings yourself without any technical support. Therefore, get the one that is user-friendly and easy to operate.
Since it is a one-time expense, make sure you invest in a good router that is designed with reliability and redundancy. You obviously do not want to spend money on a router every three months, so purchase the best one that you can find in the market and make the most out of internet connection.