Newer wireless routers come with two wireless frequencies. Most of the time, you will see your network name with a ‘2G’ or a ‘5G’ next to it. Here is what they mean.

Wireless Frequencies

Wireless frequencies are just radio waves moving between devices. Routers and wireless adapters translate those waves into the 1s and 0s, the language of all of our tech. A wireless wave’s frequency measures how tightly the waves are packed together and how fast they are moving. The higher the frequency, the fast the data moves. Both frequencies have been around for years, but they have only recently been introduced in dual-band routers.

2.4GHz vs. 5GHz

The difference between 2.4GHz and 5GHz is 2.4GHz offers more range with a weaker signal, whereas 5GHz provides a stronger signal with less coverage. Any devices needing lots of bandwidth should be positioned close to the router. Ideally, any device on the 5GHz bandwidth should be in the same room as the router as the frequency won’t travel as far through furniture and walls.

In addition, another difference between each band is the number of devices that can be connected to each without issues. 2.4GHz only has three channels that don’t overlap. Conversely, 5GHz supports 23 channels that don’t overlap. The result is that 5GHz will support more wireless devices without interfering with one another.

Lastly, battery life is something to consider when choosing a frequency to connect to. The 2.4GHz band doesn’t use as much battery life as 5GHz. Some devices will default to the 2.4GHz even if the 5GHz is available for this reason.

Configuring Your Devices

Some routers automatically separate the two bands, allowing you to pick which devices connect to which band. Some routers will only display one band, and a device will connect to whichever is strongest in relation to where it is as to the router. For full customization of your frequencies, consult your router’s user manual or give us a call. We will have one of our onsite technicians come out and configure your network for your situation.

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