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June 15, 2021
Chances are, you’re using it right now. Households across the world rely on wireless routers to work, stream, game, and connect to others around the world. It’s what keeps up mobile and up to date in an increasingly tech dominant world.
Almost every device in your home relies on it as well. Desktops, laptops, phones, game consoles, smart homes, thermostats, and even coffee makers. A few simple steps is all it takes to connect all of them seamlessly.
Easy As 1, 2, 3
Step 1: Make a Plan
Often the easiest but most overlooked step is to assess your needs. Decide how many devices need to be connected and what their main purpose will be. Devices that stream and game will need more bandwidth than your Google Home Mini. Desktops that are used to video conferencing and work will need the insurance of a wired internet connection.
The more devices that need to be connected to the network, the stronger your router will have to be. If you plan on using 3 or fewer devices, you’re probably going to be okay with any router or modem on the market.
Any increase will result in strained bandwidth. At this point you’ll want to look into range extenders or dual band routers and modems. It’s wise to give each device the option to access lower or higher frequencies. It will ultimately free up your local area network (LAN Port) for more important dedicated space.
Connecting your router directly to high traffic devices through the ethernet port will ensure dedicated and prioritized bandwidth.
For extremely large spaces–consider getting a netgear wifi extender set up, or tp link extender set up. These devices boost your wireless connection further than typical routers, and might help save you money in the long run.
Step 2: How to Set Up Your WiFi Router
Mobile devices like smartphones and tablets wireless ready, you don’t have to do much to set those up. However, some older laptops and desktops only offer wired internet ports. Most modems and routers have QR Codes on how to best connect these devices.
Most services (like the Google Wifi App) will take you step by step through the entire setup. They might even go the extra step and allocate the bandwidth to each device for you.
If you’re required to do it manually, it’s best to check what speeds you have available. You can run a speed test to find out. Before you connect any other devices to the WiFi, know that the results you find on this test are your overall speeds–they’ll probably go down as bandwidth splits across multiple devices.
If the router you’ve purchased, or currently have, can’t adapt to the speeds you want or need, simply upgrade. Most Internet Service Providers have modems and routers that come with the plan, and they’ll typically walk you through your WiFi set up.
Step 3: Secure Your WiFi Network
Wirelessly connecting each and every device is a task unto itself. When securing your Wi Fi Network, make sure you use names, passwords, and logins that are easily accessible to your household. Complex passwords may keep squatters out (they’re rare anymore), but it might create a headache for you down the line.
Configuring your router should be fairly simple. Most routers and modems provide instructions directly on them. Scan the QR Code (if available), or go to the designated IP Address listed on the device itself. A Google WiFi setup is automatic, and instantly connects to all other Google devices on the network.
Enter the username and password as required. It’s usually “admin” for the username and in many cases no password is needed (if you scanned a code, those are personalized and will import all data automatically for you).
At this point you’ll have access to the administrators menu. From here, be sure to enable WPA2 encryption to keep your personal information safe on the web. And remember, while setting up a wireless network, create passwords for both ease of access and device flexibility–don’t make it too complicated. If you’re worried, always have an ethernet cable plugged into your device for the safest and most secure connection.