Picture it: you’re just wrapping up that big Zoom presentation when you glance up and realize your client’s screen is frozen. Or the kids are only catching every third word of their online lecture. Now, it’s up to you to make sure they learn their multiplication tables. These days, the stakes are higher than ever when it comes to home connectivity. Luckily, a mesh WiFi network can boost your whole-home coverage and improve network reliability.
What’s a mesh WiFi network?
Whether you’re an IT expert or think WiFi is some kind of modern magic, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. Wireless mesh networks, or mesh WiFi networks, are still an emerging (and exciting) technology. And some experts believe they’re the key to a seamlessly connected world, eventually. In fact, this relatively inexpensive technology has already been used to wire entire communities.
Traditional WiFi routers
So how does it work? First, let’s look at how traditional networks function. In a basic network, you have a single wireless hub. This central point facilitates and authenticates wireless communication. You can think of it as the center of a bike tire—each “spoke” off the wheel’s center supports one WiFi device. But there’s limited space for spokes around the hub.
In a small environment, like your home or office, or a space with just a few connected devices, that single router is usually enough to get the job done. In fact, here at Stereo Planet we’re big fans of traditional networks. As long as you’re using good routers and controllers—something designed to handle large amounts of traffic—a wired router can be more reliable than a wireless connection and broadcast into different areas in your home.
But, if you don’t have the right wiring in place to support a high-quality traditional router, a mesh network offers some big advantages. Foremost among them: the ability to get good wireless coverage throughout your home.
Mesh WiFi network
Imagine if, instead of a single hub, you had dozens (or even hundreds) of wireless nodes. These nodes could be spread out across a larger area, “talking” to each other and sharing the network connection. These nodes effectively create a WiFI “blanket,” covering your entire space and expanding way beyond a single router’s capabilities.
Is a mesh WiFi network right for your home?
Like we said before, for many homes, a traditional WiFi router gets the job done. But there are a few common problems that a mesh network can address.
- Do you have multiple family members working or learning from home?
When multiple devices use the same network (connected through the same router), they all compete with each other. That leads to low quality or buffering while streaming, glitchy gaming, and slow loading websites. By providing multiple points of network access, a mesh network reduces competition and leads to better coverage across devices.
- Does your home have “dead zones” or places where the WiFi gets choppy?
Let’s use what we know best as an example: sound systems. You can have a top-tier speaker system at the front of the house, but you’ll still have a hard time hearing it if you step into the bedroom or kitchen. A mesh network functions more like surround sound. You can strategically place nodes to make sure you’ve got full coverage. This makes it an effective way to eliminate dead zones.
- Could your WiFi needs change in the future?
One of the perks of a wireless mesh network is that they’re easy to scale-up as your needs (or space) change.
Your whole-home connectivity experts
If it’s time to up your home connectivity, the team at Stereo Planet can help. Not only do we have plenty of experience working with technology. But we’re also experts when it comes to troubleshooting custom solutions for your unique space. Just give us a call to see if a mesh WiFi network can help you work (or learn) more efficiently.