If you have Internet service in your home, you probably have a router. This is an important piece of equipment that is often overlooked. Usually, the router is supplied by your Internet provider and also contains the modem. The modem is the device that connects you to the Internet. The router part performs several functions:
- Provides wireless access for your Wi-Fi devices.
- Acts as a firewall to help provide security against hackers (however, not 100% guaranteed protection).
- Directs Internet traffic throughout your home.
All of these functions are important, but especially the last one. Our home has many devices hooked to the Internet. They included satellite TV receivers in multiple rooms, several computers, and connected audio/video components including TVs, Blu-Ray players and A/V receivers. Although I had subscribed to a high speed Internet plan, I noticed that my connection would continually slow down. Unplugging and plugging back in my modem/router would temporarily fix the problem for about a day. I had the cable company send a technician out.
He told me that the modem/router the cable company supplied was “junk.” He said that to direct all the Internet traffic properly so that there wouldn’t be IP crashes, a router needed a strong processor, unlike the cheapo one I had. He also said that the Wi-Fi function of the router was substandard, causing intermittent dropouts and limited range.
It was at that point that I had him install a plain modem without a router. I then went to my local electronics store and bought the best router I could find. A really good one can run about $140-$200. I can tell you that it was well worth it! Internet speed is always at maximum. Netflix and various videos from the Internet both, on wired and wireless connections, stream flawlessly. DirecTV Video On Demand, which also uses the Internet works very well.
So, if you’re not getting enough speed from your Internet, upgrading your router could be the answer.