Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender: What is the difference, and which should you buy for your business?

91
Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender
Image Credit: Melpomenm / Getty Images

Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender: The internet has become a crucial element of our everyday lives in today’s society, both at home and at work. As a result, businesses rely largely on powerful and dependable internet connections to run efficiently.

However, there are occasions when the WiFi signal is insufficient to reach certain areas of the office or building, resulting in an unpleasant and poor online experience. This is where Mesh WiFi or WiFi Extenders may help businesses expand their WiFi coverage.

RELATED: What are the different types of Wireless Devices?

In this article, we will compare Mesh WiFi vs. WiFi Extenders and explore which solution is best for your business needs.

What is Mesh WiFi?

Mesh WiFi is a type of wireless networking technology that is intended to give continuous coverage across wide regions. Mesh WiFi, as opposed to standard WiFi networks, which depend on a single router to distribute the signal, employs many devices, or nodes, to build a network that covers a larger area.

A Mesh WiFi network’s nodes operate as relays, receiving and transferring data between devices and other nodes. This results in a powerful network that can adapt to changes in the environment, such as obstructions or interference, by routing traffic along the strongest and most dependable channel.

One of the primary benefits of Mesh WiFi over standard WiFi networks is its ability to deliver continuous coverage over vast locations, such as multi-story buildings and outdoor settings. This makes it an excellent choice for businesses that demand consistent WiFi coverage in several locations or for bigger facilities.

Mesh WiFi systems, on the other hand, are more costly than standard routers, and their setup and maintenance may need more technical knowledge.

Furthermore, the positioning of the nodes may restrict the signal’s range, necessitating more careful design and optimization.

Here are some key points to know about Mesh WiFi:

  • Consist of several nodes that work together to provide a strong and consistent WiFi signal throughout your business. Each node communicates with the others, creating a “mesh” of coverage.
  • Use a single network name (SSID), making it easy for devices to connect and roam seamlessly between nodes without interruption.
  • Easy to set up and manage, often offering intuitive smartphone apps for configuration and maintenance.
  • Can be more expensive than traditional WiFi solutions but offer more advanced features and capabilities.
  • Are best suited for large, multi-story offices or buildings where traditional WiFi solutions may struggle to provide adequate coverage.

Overall, Mesh WiFi provides a robust and seamless internet experience for businesses that demand reliable and fast internet coverage throughout their offices.

With its advanced features and ease of use, Mesh WiFi is quickly becoming a popular solution for businesses of all sizes.

What is a WiFi Extender?

A WiFi Extender is a gadget that boosts the existing signal to increase the range of a WiFi network. It operates by receiving the primary router’s WiFi signal and then rebroadcasting it to places that are out of range.

This may aid in improving WiFi coverage in regions remote from the primary router, such as the basement or garden.

WiFi Extenders are simple to install and may be a cost-effective method to extend WiFi coverage in limited areas. They may also be used to improve the performance of older routers that may not be compatible with the most recent WiFi standards.

One of the benefits of WiFi Extenders is their low cost and simplicity of usage. They don’t need extra wiring or technical skills to install, and they might be a viable option for businesses looking to expand their WiFi coverage in small or medium-sized rooms.

However, there are several disadvantages to utilizing WiFi Extenders. They may not be as dependable as Mesh WiFi networks since they rely on the strength of the current signal to operate.

Here are some key features of WiFi Extenders:

  • Easy to install and can be set up without the need for technical expertise.
  • Generally less expensive than Mesh WiFi systems, making them a cost-effective option for small to medium-sized businesses.
  • Compact and easy to move around, making them a convenient solution for businesses that require WiFi coverage in specific areas.
  • Compatible with most routers and can work with any WiFi-enabled device.

However, WiFi Extenders have some limitations that businesses should be aware of. They may reduce the overall speed of the network and create latency or delay in the signal.

Additionally, the location of the extender is crucial, and incorrect placement may lead to further signal degradation.

RELATED: What is the best way to Extend your WiFi Range? Extending your Wireless Network for the best coverage

Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender

When it comes to improving WiFi coverage, Mesh Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi Extenders are two popular solutions that businesses can choose from.

Both options serve the same purpose of extending WiFi coverage, but there are significant differences between them that can impact their effectiveness for your business needs.

Here are some key differences between Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender:

  • Coverage: Mesh WiFi is designed to provide seamless coverage throughout large areas, whereas WiFi Extenders are better suited for extending coverage to specific areas.
  • Reliability: Mesh WiFi creates a robust network that adapts to changes in the environment and ensures consistent coverage, whereas WiFi Extenders may reduce the overall speed of the network and create latency or delay in the signal.
  • Scalability: Mesh WiFi is easily scalable, allowing businesses to add nodes to expand the network as needed, while WiFi Extenders have limitations on the number of devices that can be connected.
  • Cost: Mesh WiFi systems tend to be more expensive than WiFi Extenders, but they provide more comprehensive coverage and support for multiple devices.
  • Technical expertise: Mesh WiFi systems may require more technical expertise to set up and maintain, while WiFi Extenders are generally easy to install and can be set up without technical expertise.

Mesh WiFi is a powerful wireless networking technology that offers seamless coverage and support for multiple devices, making it a good solution for businesses that require reliable WiFi coverage in large areas.

However, it may be more expensive and require more technical expertise to set up and maintain.

On the other hand, WiFi Extenders are a cost-effective and convenient solution for extending coverage to specific areas but may not be as reliable or scalable as Mesh WiFi.

Choosing Between Mesh Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi Extender

Choosing between Mesh WiFi and WiFi Extender requires careful consideration of your business needs and requirements. Here are some factors to consider when deciding between Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender:

  • Coverage Area: If your business requires seamless coverage throughout a large area, Mesh WiFi may be the better option. However, if you need coverage in specific areas, such as conference rooms or remote offices, WiFi Extenders may be a more cost-effective option.
  • Number of Devices: Mesh WiFi supports multiple devices and can handle high traffic, making it a better choice for businesses that require high bandwidth usage. WiFi Extenders may be more limited in the number of devices they can support and may result in slower speeds.
  • Scalability: Mesh WiFi is easily scalable, allowing businesses to add nodes to expand the network as needed. WiFi Extenders have limitations on the number of devices that can be connected and may not be as easily expandable.
  • Technical Expertise: Mesh WiFi systems may require more technical expertise to set up and maintain, while WiFi Extenders are generally easy to install and can be set up without technical expertise.
  • Budget: Mesh WiFi systems tend to be more expensive than WiFi Extenders, but they provide more comprehensive coverage and support for multiple devices. WiFi Extenders are a cost-effective solution for businesses that need to extend coverage to specific areas.

Choosing between Mesh WiFi vs. WiFi Extender requires careful consideration of your business needs, budget, and technical expertise.

Both solutions offer benefits and limitations, and consulting with a professional IT provider is recommended to assess your requirements and provide tailored solutions for your business.

By understanding the differences between Mesh WiFi and WiFi Extender, you can make an informed decision that will provide reliable and seamless WiFi coverage for your business.

RELATED: Wi-Fi security: Securing your wireless network

Best Mesh Wi-Fi for SMBs

Mesh WiFi and WiFi Extender are two popular solutions businesses can choose from to improve their WiFi coverage. Both solutions offer unique benefits and limitations, and the choice between Mesh WiFi vs WiFi Extender ultimately depends on your business needs, budget, and technical expertise.

RELATED: 5 Tips to super boost your Wi-Fi

Choosing the best Mesh WiFi system for your business depends on your specific needs and requirements

Several Mesh Wi-Fi systems on the market are known for their performance and reliability.

Here are some of the best Mesh WiFi systems for businesses:

  1. Google Nest WiFi: This system is known for its ease of use and simplicity, making it a popular choice for businesses that need a reliable Mesh WiFi system. It supports up to 200 connected devices and offers a range of up to 2,200 square feet per router.
  2. Netgear Orbi Pro: This Mesh WiFi system is designed for small to medium-sized businesses and offers high-performance WiFi coverage with speeds up to 3 Gbps. It also comes with advanced security features to protect your business network.
  3. AmpliFi HD: This Mesh WiFi system is designed for businesses with high bandwidth requirements and supports up to 500 connected devices. It offers a range of up to 20,000 square feet per router and comes with advanced features such as guest access and parental controls.
  4. Eero Pro: This Mesh WiFi system offers high-performance WiFi coverage with speeds up to 1 Gbps and supports up to 128 connected devices. It also comes with advanced security features and parental controls.
  5. Linksys Velop: This Mesh WiFi system offers a range of up to 5,000 square feet per node and supports up to 25 connected devices per node. It also comes with advanced features such as guest access and parental controls.

Investing in a high-quality Mesh WiFi system ensures that your business has the reliable connectivity it needs to operate efficiently and effectively. However, consulting with a professional IT provider to assess your business needs and provide tailored solutions for your WiFi coverage is recommended.

You might also like