Internet FAQs

Do you need a router to get internet?

If you only have one device, you can directly connect it using an ethernet cable. To enjoy the internet throughout on multiple devices, you will need either a router or Mesh system.

What is WiFi?

WiFi is a wireless networking technology that allows devices such as computers and mobile devices to access the internet.

How does WiFi work?

A wireless or WiFi network uses a radio frequency signal instead of wires to connect your devices. The signal can be picked up by any wireless-capable device within a certain distance.

What is a WiFi frequency band?

To put it simply, WiFi frequency refers to the specific range of radio waves that your wireless network uses to transmit data between devices. WiFi technology has two primary frequency bands: the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands.

What is the difference between 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequency?

The main differences between the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz frequencies are speed and range. A 2.4 GHz connection travels farther to lower speeds, while 5GHz frequencies provide faster speeds at a shorter range.

The 2.4 GHz band gives you more range and passes better through walls and other physical obstructions. If you need higher performance or speed, use the 5 GHz band.

Does your router make a difference in your service?

YES! This device is the key piece of equipment that broadcasts the wireless signal. With technology constantly changing, the devices you connected to a year ago could now be causing issues.

EVERYDAY ELECTRONICS

Older routers only use the 2.4 GHz radio frequency to send and receive data so this can be a problem. Other electronics in your home such as Microwaves, cordless home phones, wireless headsets, gaming devices, Bluetooth devices, and car alarms utilize the same 2.4 GHz frequency. These devices cause congestion and can interfere with the WiFi signal that your router sends out causing slow internet speeds and poor or dropped connections. Dual Band Routers use two frequencies to send and receive data: the 2.4 GHz and the 5 GHz bands. Having another frequency helps stop interference from other devices and helps alleviate a congested network.

HOME SIZE

The size of your home can also determine the effectiveness of your router. A traditional lower end single band router may not be strong enough to provide adequate coverage throughout your home. Higher end routers can send a stronger signal farther, and mesh systems provide multiple access points that can be placed throughout the home for greater coverage.

What is upload vs download?

Upload = Send
Download = Receive

In computer networks, download means to receive data from a remote system (a web server, an FTP server, an email server or other similar systems). This contrasts with uploading, where data is sent.

For example, when you are looking at Facebook you are downloading. The information you are looking at, you are receiving from Facebook. When you post a comment, upload a picture or comment on someone else’s post, you are uploading.

What is bandwidth?

Internet bandwidth or network bandwidth is the maximum amount of data (measured in Kilobit, Megabit or even Gigabit) that can be transferred per second over a network link. If your internet package is 50Mbps download, this means you have a bandwidth of 50Mbps and 50 megabits of data can be downloaded in one second.

Everything you do using the internet uses your allotted bandwidth and can be measured in kilobits, megabits or gigabits which is subtracted from your download and upload rates. When your bandwidth is used up by all the devices connected at one time, your internet has issues such as buffered video stream, disconnected internet, or page not displayed.

Is there a difference between internet speed and internet bandwidth?

Yes, there is. Speed is measured by the amount of data you can download or upload in one second. Bandwidth is measured by the amount of data you’re allowed to download or upload in one second, which depends on your internet plan.

For example, if you start downloading a movie from Netflix and the download manager maxes out at 18Mbps. In this case, your actual bandwidth is 50 megabits per second, but the speed you’re getting is only 18 megabits per second. So even though you aren’t using your full bandwidth, your speed is limited due to other reasons.

Home WiFi Devices

A WiFi device is directly connected to an internet connection coming from outside the home or building via ethernet or coax cable. The WiFi device then broadcasts a wireless signal using radio waves that other devices, like laptops, TVs and cell phones can connect to.

There are two main types of home WiFi devices: Wireless Routers and Mesh Systems.

WIRELESS ROUTERS

Wireless Routers are a device that broadcast WiFi signals from a single point and should be centralized in the home for best coverage.

MESH SYSTEMS

Mesh Systems have multiple access points, sometimes referred to as satellites or pucks, that are placed throughout the home to extend your WiFi coverage.

Factors That Affect Your Internet Speed

All of these factors below affect the speed at which your content is delivered to you:

  • The type and age of your router.
  • The distance away from your router or mesh access point.
  • The device you are using to connect to the internet: Smart TV, Laptop, Xbox, PlayStation, Roku, etc.
  • The cabling inside your home.
  • The network cabling in the ground for your service provider (Fiber is currently the best).
  • The server that you are pulling content from: Netflix server, Hulu, local company’s website, etc.
  • Everything between you and where your content lives.

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