Wi-Fi  and Internet are Two Different Things

For years now, the term Wi-Fi has often been synonymous with access to the internet. Most of us use "Wi-Fi" as a shortcut to mean our home broadband internet connection. And when you're traveling, free Wi-Fi is understood as free internet since that's the only reason you use Wi-Fi when out and about.

We'll try to  clarify the difference between the two often confused terms and provide some info that might answer other connection related questions. Knowing the difference between Wi-Fi and internet connections can help you troubleshoot problems at home as well.

Your internet source and your Wi-Fi network are both critical components that require equal attention and investment if you want to ensure a seamless and modern user experience.

Let Us Help You With Both!

What is Wi-Fi?
Wi-Fi is technology that connects your personal devices, such as your smartphone, laptop or TV, to the Internet without the need of a physical wired connection. This network technology transmits radio signals to and from your router so that you can browse the internet, use cloud applications, stream videos or play online games. It is entirely independent of the internet.

Internet speed and Wi-Fi speed are not the same?
Understanding the difference between internet speed and Wi-Fi speed is important. Internet speed is the upload and download speed that is stated on your internet speed plan on your bill — this is what you pay for. Think of internet speed as the “pipe” that enters your home. Once inside the home, all your personal devices that need to access the internet are connected to the router either via ethernet (network cables) or Wi-Fi. Ethernet connected devices perform the best and offer the maximum speed of your internet plan. Performance of Wi-Fi connected devices will depend on the configuration of the Wi-Fi network and what steps have been taken to optimize it

Every Home is Different
When listening to music on the radio, the sound quality is not only dependent on how close you are to the radio but also on the number of walls the sound must pass through. Wi-Fi acts in a similar way. In order for Wi-Fi signals to travel from your router to where you are using your device, it must pass through your walls and floors. Building materials like concrete and brick will reduce your Wi-Fi signal strength.

Interference from neighbours
Wi-Fi signals operate only on certain radio frequencies. Congestion on these frequencies are problematic because of high density living. Wi-Fi networks can become overcrowded, just like traffic on highways. The number of neighbouring Wi-Fi networks around and outside your home can have a significant impact on the Wi-Fi performance inside your home

Demand in the home
The number of devices, age of your devices and what you do on your devices are also important. If you have multiple Wi-Fi devices operating at the same time, each device must wait their turn to communicate, sharing the same Internet bandwidth to your home.

For Wi-Fi connected devices, your internet gets distributed and shared amongst all your Wi-Fi personal devices that you use. The Wi-Fi speeds that you can attain depend on the strength of signal your device is receiving within the home. This signal strength is a function of the Wi-Fi coverage in the  home, various factors determine this. The number of wireless devices operating in the modern home and the data they demand grows everyday.

What is Wi-Fi coverage?

Wi-Fi coverage is the quality of your signal over a certain distance that enables you to connect your personal devices to the internet seamlessly. As mentioned, Wi-Fi coverage behaves similarly to music playing from a speaker. The closer you are to the speaker, the better quality and clearer you can hear the music. Just as you hear music, your Wi-Fi signal is stronger (and faster) the closer you are to your router. As you move further away from your router, Wi-Fi signals lose intensity, which is why the quality of your connection decreases. At some point, you might move far enough away that you will simply be out of range and have no Wi-Fi signal at all.

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Edmonton, T5J 3R8
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