- 1 Differences Between Modem and Router
- 2 What is a Modem?
- 3 What is a Router?
- 4 What is a Modem Router?
- 5 Which One Should I Choose?
Modem and the WiFi router are often referred to as ‘network adapters’ as they can manage wired and wireless Internet connections. But the modem and WiFi router isn’t the same. A modem isn’t a router, but there’re also modem routers that are 2-in-1 devices.
We assure you that there is nothing to worry about before you get discouraged because you think the conversation is too complex. Read this detailed guide on the subject, and in reality, you will see that the concept is straightforward.
Differences Between Modem and Router
A modem is an electronic device that connects your computer or home network to the Internet. A router is a device that allows all your wired and wireless devices to use this Internet connection at the same time and communicate directly.
After the modem provides the Internet connection, the router forwards it to different devices.
What is a Modem?
A modem is a device that allows you to connect your computer or home network to the provided global Internet. This is because the modem converts (modulates) the ADSL or Fiber signal from your carrier’s cable into a digital signal that the computer can process.
You must distinguish between the modem’s two connection types. The first is known as a fixed-line over conventional cable. The second is known as long-distance because it uses the GSM frequency (global system for mobile communication), which also uses mobile phones. It can directly connect to the cell to which the smartphone is secured, access the Internet, and then forward the connection.
Today, there’re so many 4G modems, both fixed and mobile, that even 5G compatible models are starting to appear, but they’re still very few and expensive.
What is a Router?
Unlike a modem, a router is a device that distributes the connection between various devices connected to it. If the modem converts ADSL, Fiber or mobile signal from analog to digital, the router transmits it to the computer or tablet, routing the networks’ data. It practically manages the traffic and sorts the data packets.
However, it also has a dual role: Managing communication between multiple devices and different networks, allowing them to communicate. The LAN- local area network is the best-known example, where various devices are connected to the same router. You can make this connection via Ethernet or Wireless ports.
Another example of a pure router, one of the few remaining, is the WiFi signal repeater, which actually consists of two routers: One captures the signal of the WiFi network and transmits it to the other, which takes it in turn.
What is a Modem Router?
We hope that the difference between modem and router is now clear to you with what has been said so far. If so, you will also realize that you need both a modem and a router if you want to surf the Internet with your computer or smartphone via WiFi.
But if you needed two different devices in the past, almost all devices on the market today work as modems and routers. It transmits the analog signal from the network cable to all your devices and converts it.
This is the most effective remedy and the most convenient. It’s a single device to connect your computer, laptop, smartphone, tablet or any other electronic device you want to access the Internet. You will find almost exclusively these 2-in-1 models on the market.
Remember that today there’re two main categories of these devices. The main difference between modems and routers available today is signal reception. Mobile ones use the same phone signal as the 4G network or the new 5G, the standard ones that connect to the landline cable. The latter can also be stationary or portable and is perfect for those who can’t put ADSL at home.
Which One Should I Choose?
After realizing that it’s better to buy a modem router directly if you want to have the Internet, let’s now understand how to choose the right one for your needs. There’re quite a few on the market, and you should carefully consider a few features before purchasing one. The main aspects that a modem router should have are:
- Ethernet ports must be available to connect consoles and stationary computers that don’t have wireless connectivity, such as inexpensive multifunction printers.
- Must have a WiFi network, at least 802.11ac with WPA2 security.
- It should have a dual-band feature. If you’re looking for high performance, a model that supports 5Ghz and 2.4GHz WiFi is better.
- It should have antennas where the network coverage is highly dependent, even at the farthest points.
- If you intend to use a portable modem router, it must have a 4G or 5G mobile connection.
- It should have USB ports that allow you to use the device as a personal cloud.
The most important thing to consider is the speed and stability of the WiFi. If you want a model that lets you stream in high definition or even 4K and surf at high speed, you’ll have to go for at least mid-range models or even professional models.