It’s a question I get asked often and the simple answer is….. it depends.

In situations where you are fortunate enough to have proximity and ethernet access from your router to your devices, then my suggestion would be to use this cabled option as it will be more reliable, faster and less prone to problems and interference

However, if you are like the majority of us who have the router in a part of the house many rooms away from your devices you want to connect, then Wi-Fi may be you only choice unless you want to consider running new Ethernet Cat 5 or Cat 6 cable through the walls  ( expensive option on existing houses )

So that leaves Wi-Fi as an option but depending on the router you are using, you may have seen options with the available Wi-Fi networks on offer namely 2.4 Ghz and 5 Ghz.

 

What’s the difference between 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz Wi-Fi?

The difference between the two is pretty simple: it all comes down to range and speed. 2.4 GHz has a longer range, meaning it reaches a lot further than 5 GHz Wi-Fi.1 However, even though you can connect to 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi from your basement, it will have a slower speed.1

5 GHz Wi-Fi is faster. But faster also means it won’t reach as far. Techie lingo aside, you trade one benefit for the other when it comes to your internet connection. Keep in mind that not all routers support both versions of Wi-Fi—many older routers only have 2.4 GHz, while newer routers usually have both.

The same goes for devices. If you have a really old PC, it might not have an option for changing Wi-Fi frequencies. But your new smartphone very likely does. In order to experience the full benefits of 5 GHz Wi-Fi, you should use a device and router that supports it.

Is it better to connect to 2.4 GHz or 5 Ghz Wi-Fi?

It really depends on your situation. 2.4 GHz can travel further, which means the signal can go through walls and solid objects more easily. This means your device will have an easier time connecting. It’s also the signal that’s been around for the longest time, so many devices can connect to it.

However, sometimes the 2.4 GHz bandwave is overused. There’s a bunch of devices that use this frequency, such as microwaves, any bluetooth devices, and even wireless landline phones.

Having lots of devices connected to the same wave of Wi-Fi can cause more disruptions. (If you are experiencing trouble with your Wi-Fi and you have a newer device, try switching to 5 GHz and see what happens.)

The great thing about 5 GHz is that there’s typically fewer devices using it. If you can connect your device to this frequency (just go to Wi-Fi settings) then chances are you’ll have fewer glitches. However, keep in mind that the signal from your router won’t reach as far as it would at 2.4 GHz.  Connect My Tech can help you sort out the best connectivity options that will suit your requirements

 

     

    Patrick Larobina