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Create the best networking set up. From demystifying terms like mesh wifi, modem, wifi routers and more to helping you select the right device, we've got you covered.

Boosting your wifi with a mesh wifi router

Mesh wifi system.

What is mesh wifi?

Imagine an invisible net cast over your home that transmits the same strength of wifi signal to every room. That's mesh wifi.

Whether you're streaming a video, playing a game or downloading large files, mesh wifi let's you do it all without any buffering.

In this system, a unit is linked to the modem, and this unit becomes the main hub. The other units, known as nodes, receive signal from the main hub to then rebroadcast the wifi, giving you faster bandwidth, wherever you are in the house.

A wifi router on a table.

How do I set up a mesh wifi system?

Setting up a mesh wifi system is really easy. Typically you just plug in your additional mesh units (or "nodes") around your home wherever you need stronger wifi the most.

You may just have one mesh unit or you may have two or three. It will depend on the size of your home.

Each unit will capture and rebroadcast your wifi router's original signal, creating a network, a "mesh", of strong wifi signals wherever you are.

What is wifi 6?

Wifi 6

Wifi 6 is the next generation of wifi designed to handle heavy internet traffic. It provides speedy and steady connections to multiple devices simultaneously. The wifi router communicates with multiple devices, which means multiple users can stream, game or video chat at the same time without suffering a lag.

Wifi 6 is the new standard that future devices will be built to. It's backwards compatible which means if the device you are using is not wifi 6 capable it will run at wifi 5 (the current stand) speeds.

What is a wifi booster and range extender?

 An illustration showing how wifi router and range extender work.

Wifi boosters and range extenders pair up with your modem router and pick up its existing wifi connection to send and receive signals further. Simply put, they push the wifi further out (e.g. to the garden), so you have extra range. Unlike mesh wifi however, the signal weakens the further out it goes.

Wifi boosters and range extenders can only send out a signal that’s the strength of your modem router. So, if its strength is N300, it weakens as the wifi booster shares the power (N150 each) between the original router and the devices that are connecting to it.

Wifi boosters and range extenders are a great value option if you're not quite ready to invest in a mesh wifi network.

    What’s the difference between mesh wifi and a wifi booster?

    A girl playing games on her computer.

    Mesh wifi vs. wifi booster

    Reach: Mesh wifi provides a consistent coverage in your entire house. Whereas a wifi booster helps in reaching the specific dead zones of your home. That being said, mesh wifi can be expanded as needed, but wifi boosters are less scalable.

    Network: Mesh wifi has one single network name. You join only once and remain connected. Whereas wifi boosters each have a unique name. So if you have multiple wifi boosters, you'll have multiple network names. E.g. 'mywifi_1, mywifi_2' etc. You have to connect your devices to each one to use internet from them.

    Performance: Mesh wifi offers a high performance across rooms, so it's a preferred choice for online gaming or high-res streaming. Wifi boosters don't offer the same speed on all devices and areas simultaneously, so it can affect tasks that call for more bandwidth.

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    What is a powerline adapter?

    A powerline adapter allows you to run the internet connection through the power cabling in your house. You plug it into a normal wall socket. There are options that also allow anything to be plugged in the front of it so that you don't even lose a socket.

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    What is a switch?

    It makes a wired connection for additional devices like games consoles, TV boxes and printers to gain access to internet.

    What is a USB wifi adapter?

    What is a USB wifi adapter?

    A USB wifi adapter, popularly known as a dongle, gives you quick internet access on the go. It is also known as a wifi dongle, USB modem, internet stick, USB network adapter or a USB mobile broadband stick.

    What's the difference between a modem and a router?

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    Most homes have a modem router which is essentially both units combined into one, but there are others who may have 2 separate units.

    • A modem takes the internet data and translates it into a language our devices understand.
    • The router then takes this translated data and distributes it to each device. 
    • If you've received a free modem router from your internet provider, chances are it's quite slow. The built-in router is causing this. By buying a separate router, you're overriding the built-in router with a better and faster one. Bye bye buffering boxsets.

    What's a band router?

    • You need a band router if your modem router is rubbish (as mentioned above) to improve your wifi performance.
    • There’s 3 band router strengths, single, dual or tri band. Think of these as a single or dual carriageway, or motorway. The more lanes, the more traffic can travel.
    • Then you can add extra units to optimise your home wifi. The below list will help you choose which set up suits you.
    • Apartment/flat – standard set up with single band router is usually fine.
    • 2 bedroom – standard set up, plus dual band router, plus wifi booster/s.
    • 3 bedroom – standard set up, plus tri band router, plus twin pack mesh wifi system.
    • More than 3 bedroom – standard set up, plus tri band router, plus triple pack mesh wifi system.
    A black dual band router on the coffee table in an apartment.

    Dual/tri band routers

    Sends out 2 or 3 different wifi signals for devices to latch on to. This reduces traffic and prevents congestion and slower speeds. Each signal has its own password.

    What is the difference between AC and AX routers?

    • AC is also known as WIFI 5 is an older generation of WIFI. The latest WIFI speed available now is AX also known as WIFI 6.
    • AX routers range from AX1800 to AX6000. The higher the number, the faster the connection. All AX routers are backward compatible which means if the device you are using is not AX it will run at AC ( WIFI 5 speeds). Most new devices being released are now WIFI 6 enabled.
    • If you're unsure whether you have an 'AX or an 'AC', just check the packaging or the back of the unit.


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