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What is a Wi-Fi Booster, and How does it Work?

The internet has single-handedly become the most important thing in the modern home in the last decade. The rise in gaming, streaming, social media and online applications has meant that a good internet connection is essential, especially if you live with teenagers or young adults who rely on Wi-Fi to survive. Perhaps your Wi-Fi connection is not very strong around the house? If this is the case, then we are sure that you have heard about it from your disgruntled teenager or sibling, or perhaps you have grown fed up of it yourself. In any case, we think that we have a solution: a Wi-Fi extender. In this article, we are going to discuss what a Wi-Fi booster is and how it works. We might even answer some other important questions while we are at it.

How do I know if I need a Wi-Fi Booster?

The most obvious sign that you need a Wi-Fi booster in your home is that you are not getting a strong connection. Let's say, for example, the internet modem is in the living room, but you are playing online in the attic; the signal connection won't be very strong because it has to travel quite far. As a result, you are likely to be left with a laggy game, long loading times, or little to no connection at all. The beauty of the Wi-Fi booster is that it can be connected to a modem and plugged in nearer to your setup. Read ahead to find out how Wi-Fi boosters work.

Which Wi-Fi Booster is Best?

To be fair, this is a pretty open-ended question, and the answer is a bit of a cop-out. It depends. It depends on quite a few things, primarily what you need the booster for and how much you are willing to spend. Here at DID, you can choose from a range of Wi-Fi extenders and boosters. With prices ranging from €20-€300, there is something here for everyone, so who are we to tell you what booster is best for you when you can pop into one of our 23 stores and make that decision yourself?

How do Wi-Fi Boosters Work?

Simply put, Wi-Fi boosters work by capturing a signal that is omitted from the original modem. In turn, it boosts that signal and amplifies it to boost it or make it stronger. It does this through a large antenna, and the result is a stronger Wi-Fi connection for those further away from the original modem. Essentially, it works as a mid-point modem. Pretty cool, eh?

Are Wi-Fi Boosters Secure?

Yes, Wi-Fi boosters are completely secure and have the same overall security as your regular router. People are often concerned that buying a booster or an extender puts you at risk of viruses or a lack of security. Still, boosters are created with the same protection as real modems, so you won't need to worry about security.

How Far Can Wi-Fi Boosters Reach?

Again, this is a question of what extender you have bought. Some of the more expensive Wi-Fi extenders will have a little added reach because they have larger or more powerful antennas. However, a good overall benchmark is that most Wi-Fi extenders will allow for about 150 feet indoors. So unless you live in the world's biggest mansion, a Wi-Fi booster should do the trick if you have connection issues.

Does a Wi-Fi Booster Need an Ethernet Cable?

The simple answer to this question is no; however, you can improve the strength of your extender's connection by using one. By and large, you don't need to connect your extender to an ethernet cable because the connection amplified by the booster is already strong enough. You will, however, (as we are sure you already know) need an ethernet cable for your main modem.

Will a Wi-Fi Booster Help with Streaming?

Absolutely! A Wi-Fi booster is a perfect way to help improve your streaming quality because it improves your internet connection strength. So, whether you are streaming YouTube videos, your favourite movie on Netflix, or your favourite gamer on Twitch, a Wi-Fi booster will give you that added push.

Wi-Fi Booster vs Extenders

Okay, let's address the elephant in the room because you have probably seen that above, we have been using the terms Wi-Fi booster and Wi-Fi extender interchangeably, and there is a reason for this… well... because they are, for the most part, the same thing.

A Wi-Fi extender extends the range of an already connected Wi-Fi network whenever the signal happens to drop. A Wi-Fi booster works in much the same way, but it is established on the Wi-Fi router in itself and works through an antenna; an extender does not do this. Now it is not a massive difference, and in buying one, you are not missing out on a specific feature that the other offers, but it is important to point out any small differences between the two.

If you are in the market for a new Wi-Fi booster and still have a few questions, then why not contact your local store, where one of our store assistants would be happy to help you out. Alternatively, call our online sales team, who will gladly assist over the phone!