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Boost WiFi Signal With A WiFi Network Extender
WiFi network extenders boost the signal of your router and WiFi devices. They basically act as a bridge between your router and WiFi devices that are located farther away. These are essential for large homes or businesses. Apple’s AirPort Express is a popular and inexpensive WiFi network extender. It even comes with an audio output, which can be used to run remote speakers using AirPlay technology.
There are many other brands of WiFi extenders. While they can often give new life to an older router, WiFi technology has vastly improved over the past few years. The new 802.11ac wireless standard is much faster and provides much more range than its predecessors. Apple TV 4 is compatible with this new standard. If you have a lot of new WiFi devices, it may be time to get a new WiFi router.
Consider Getting a New WiFi Router
If you’ve tried everything in this article, to no avail, it may be time to upgrade your WiFi router. I used the same, old, ubiquitous Linksys WRT54 router for years before replacing it with an Apple AirPort Extreme. The Linksys router was cheap, but it was old, slow, and didn’t work well. I found myself needing to restart it at least once a week. To my surprise, they still sell these, even though I replaced mine almost 10 years ago.
I highly recommend Apple’s AirPort Extreme router. At twice the price of most routers, it’s expensive, but well worth the cost. After almost 10 years of use, mine has never given me a problem. Apple regularly updates the firmware and continues to support the product, even though there are newer and better models available. The newest AirPort Extreme supports 802.11ac and can actively focus a WiFi “beam” directly to your device. This may help improve WiFi reception between walls and floors.
Google recently released the new OnHub WiFi router. It’s getting rave reviews from tech writers and customers. With its simple design and high-speed connectivity, OnHub boasts the ability to share your Internet connection with all of the WiFi devices in your home. The Google On iOS and Android app make it easy to configure the OnHub router. Beyond basic configuration, the Google On app can run speed tests and show who is connected to your network. It’s definitely more advanced than Apple’s AirPort Utility.
Whatever WiFi router you choose, keep in mind that you get what you pay for. That $30 router at the electronics store may seem like a bargain. The marketing copy on the package makes it seem like it is the best WiFi router money can buy. It may be adequate, but many of these devices are buggy and frustrating to use. The vendors stop supporting them after a few years. WiFi is essential to your computing experience. Make this choice carefully, read the reviews and don’t skimp!