Does your Internet connection seem unusually sluggish lately? Are you constantly having to reboot/power cycle your router? There are many reasons why you may be experiencing slow Internet performance. If it’s a confirmed intermittent issue (as in, your internet service provider is delivering just fine) then it may be a sign that your router is just plain old.
Here are a few things to consider:
1. If you’ve been using the same router for more than 4-6 years then you should definitely look into possibly replacing it. Most routers have internal antennas and those go bad pretty often. There isn’t a way to replace an internal antenna or radio and if changing the wireless channel doesn’t resolve speed issues, getting a new router should probably be your next option.
2. It’s important to mention that if you plan to purchase new equipment, be sure to consider buying a dual-band router. Unlike standard single-band devices that only support one wireless signal band, dual-band routers have the capability to broadcast simultaneously on both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands. Dual-band routers are more expensive but they will ultimately result in fewer issues and are a great choice for anyone who connects different devices during the same time. This way, you can stream HD content (i.e. Netflix) without dramatically degrading the quality of Internet on your laptop.
3. Of course, not all brands are created equal. Some may include extra bells and whistles that you don’t necessarily need. Do your best research and take your time in understanding the different types of routers and select the one most suitable within your budget and your needs. For best overall performance, it’s highly recommended to look into dual-band models with n-based radio and gigabit ports. On a final note, you may ultimately want to consider hard-wiring your devices since wireless technology has yet to surpass the performance of an Ethernet cable.