It’s rare to get the speed you’re paying for from your internet service provider EVERYWHERE within your home. Most people are plagued by at least one area where Wi-Fi doesn’t work well or doesn’t work at all, i.e. a dead zone. Many people have wasted exorbitant time and money upgrading their router, adding a booster, repeater or range extender, and finding they still have these problems.
What’s a range extender?
A range “extender” is a networking device that’s meant to increase wireless range. They rely on one radio to both receive and transmit information. Since data only has one path in or out, bandwidth is cut in half. Connecting more and more devices just puts additional stress on that single radio, further affecting performance. Only a single range extender can be added to a router in any given direction. If your router is located in a far corner of the home, it’s not possible to add multiple extenders in a row from room to room.
In addition, most extenders use a separate network SSID from your router, meaning you’re left operating two or more different WiFi networks. You’re forced to physically toggle between the networks on your devices when moving from room to room.
There are some new technologies that are showing some promise for extending Wi-Fi coverage. These devices will create a “mesh network” of multiple devices to increase the range and use a single network name. They are coming on the market so stay tuned.