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WiFi Range Extender and Booster explained: Which is the best?

What is a Wi-Fi extender?

Now a Wi-Fi extender, as the name suggests, is what extends the range of a wireless signal from a Wi-Fi router. It acts as a bridge between a Wi-Fi router and a Wi-Fi device that is outside the range of a Wi-Fi router's signal. The Wi-Fi extender first connects to an existing Wi-Fi network and then once it's connected it then acts like a wireless access point for Wi-Fi devices to connect to.

So as an example most people who have internet service in their home will most likely have a Wi-Fi router that will broadcast a wireless signal all throughout their home so that their wireless devices can have internet access. But sometimes there might be issues where the wireless signal is not strong enough to cover the entire house.

So for example if the Wi-Fi router is in the living room. Now if you have a wireless laptop that's connected to the router's Wi-Fi in the same room as the Wi-Fi router, the signal is obviously going to be very strong since it's close to the router. But as you move away from the router, the wireless signal will not be as strong. So if you are on the 2nd floor of your house, the signal is weak but you will still be connected and still have internet access.

WiFi Range Extender and Booster explained: Which is the best?

And also in the kitchen, it's the same result. The signal is not as strong but you can still access the Internet. So reaching the wireless signal in these two areas are not necessarily a problem. However, if you were to try to access the wireless signal from the furthest distance in the house, like up here in the bedroom, the wireless signal is going to be very weak or the signal may not reach at all.

1. And the main reason for this is obviously the distance because as you get further away from the Wi-Fi router, the signal weakens.

2. And another reason is the building structure because as a wireless signal broadcasts the signal gets weakened as it goes through walls and through floors in a building.

Now one way to solve this problem could be to reposition the Wi-Fi router to a different location in the house such as moving it closer to the center. But this can be a problem, especially if you have wired devices connected to a router or if you have a connecting modem that can't be moved and that needs to be in its original location.

WiFi Range Extender and Booster explained: Which is the best?

But there is another way to solve this and this is by using a Wi-Fi extender. The Wi-Fi extender will connect to the wireless signal & extend the distance of the wireless signal so that it can reach further distances.

WiFi Range Extender and Booster explained: Which is the best?

So the best place to put the Wi-Fi extender would be somewhere in the middle of this home. So if you put it in the kitchen. And by placing it in the kitchen, the Wi-Fi extender is still close enough to receive a strong signal from the router and it can still send a strong signal up to the bedroom.

So now the Wi-Fi extender will connect wirelessly to the Wi-Fi router signal and then once it's connected it will broadcast its own wireless signal all throughout this home.

Now keep in mind, the Wi-Fi extender is not strengthening or amplifying the router signal. It's actually broadcasting its own signal but it's getting its internet access from the router.

So for example this router broadcasts a wireless signal with a name that's customizable. And this name is called the SSID or service set identifier. So let's say that the owner called the wireless signal 'Home' h.o.m.e. this name is how you identify which wireless signal that you want to connect to. And the Wi-Fi extender will also broadcast a signal with its own SSID or name.

Now a lot of times when you're hooking up a Wi-Fi extender, the extender's setup assistant may name itself as the same SSID as the router's. But with a name added at the end.

So for example, as I said before the router's SSID is called 'Home' and then once the extender is configured and hooked up to the router, it may call itself 'HomeExt'.

So now, if we open the laptop in the bedroom & then scan for wireless networks in the area, you will notice the router's Wi-Fi signal called 'Home' & the Wi-Fi extender's signal as 'HomeExt'. And you can notice that the Wi-Fi signal of the router is very weak. But the signal of Wi-Fi extender is very strong.

WiFi Range Extender and Booster explained: Which is the best?

So, this laptop will now connect to the Wi-Fi extender's signal & then once it's connected, it's able to access the internet. So now any device that connects to the Wi-Fi extender's signal will be able to access the Internet.

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