Should you buy your own router?
You probably don’t think about your home router very often. Typically, it’s provided by your Internet Service Provider (ISP) – either for free or on a rental basis.
According to Consumer Reports, however, there are several reasons why you may want to get your own router rather than rely on the one supplied by your ISP:
- You don’t want to buy or rent a router from your service provider.
- Your router has only wired connectivity, but you want to go online with wireless devices, such as a laptop or tablet.
- Your existing router is too slow or its wireless range is too short to reach important places in your home.
A router is the device “that lets you distribute your internet connection to a variety of devices throughout your home, including laptops, smartphones, tablets, smart-TV sets, and streaming media devices.”
Because routers are central to your wireless lifestyle, it’s important to choose one that best meets your particular needs. Before you go shopping, consider the following:
The size of your home. If you live in a large house with a lots of rooms and more than one floor you’ll want a router with a long range and strong data throughput at a distance.
Where the router will be located. Drywall, plaster, and doors will interfere with your router’s performance. The more floors, walls, and windows in the way, the worse for the signal.
Your internet connection. A router with top speed won’t necessarily improve performance. Data can only move as fast as your internet connection allows.
How many devices will be connected at any one time. Less expensive routers can usually handle up to 10 devices connected at the same time. However, in today’s world you may have four people in your house and 16 devices.