A wireless router is an electronic device that functions as a router and as a wireless access point. It connects one or more computers/mobile devices/computer networks to other computers/mobile devices/computer networks to a single internet connection.
How Does a Wireless Router Work?
When you plug your computer/mobile device to your router after switching it on, data is sent through the connection to the router. The wireless router then takes the binary signal from your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and converts this data into a series of radio signals. After this, it sends or “routes” the radio signals over the 802.11 spectrum to other Wi-Fi enabled devices like smartphones, laptops, tablets, gaming consoles, etc without using another cable.
However, although the device is called a wireless router, it must be attached a specific cable if you want it to connect to the internet. This cable is called an Ethernet cable.
Common Wireless Router Standards
Wireless routers come in different standards. The available wireless standards are Wireless A (802.11a), Wireless B (802.11b), Wireless G (802.11g), Wireless N (802.11n) and Wireless AC (802.11ac). The most common standards today are Wireless N (slower speed and not ideal if you’re watching 4K videos) and Wireless AC (higher speed and can also handle more connected devices at the same time).
Should You Get a Wireless Router?
There are various reasons why you should consider buying a wireless router.
• Connect multiple devices to a single internet connection: A wireless router enables you to connect all your modern electronic devices. Most of these smart devices require a Wi-Fi internet connection for feature updates, so without a Wi-Fi router, you won’t be able to take advantage of the technology. It’s also the easiest way to share files between multiple devices and play games with your friends on your network.
• Improve network security: With its built-in firewall, a wireless router adds extra protection to your network. It ensures that the data transferred to your network is safe and encrypted and protects against malware. Some wireless routers also come with built-in features like parental control through which you can block access to inappropriate web content on your home network for your kids.
Wireless routers are constantly evolving. The upcoming wireless routers with 802.11 AD standard will enable smooth 4K streaming of Netflix, Amazon and YouTube videos to all your devices.