A wireless network uses a signal instead of wires to connect your devices - such as computers, printers and smartphones - to the Internet and each other. (A wireless network is commonly known as WiFi, and both terms are used interchangeably.) The WiFi signal can be picked up by any wireless-capable device such as a laptop or tablet within a certain distance in all directions. Set up WiFi in your home and follow these simple guidelines on how to Improve Your Wireless Home Network's Speed and Upgrade Your Wireless Network Equipment.
Why Do I Need WiFi?
Considering whether or not to set up WiFi in your home? Here are just a few reasons to set up a wireless network in your home:
- Freedom to access the Internet from anywhere within the signal range and move your devices around your home - anywhere within the WiFi signal range - without losing your connection. Take any moveable device, like a laptop, into any room and still have Internet access, no extra work required.
- Ability to access other devices connected to your network, for example, multiple computers can use one printer without a direct wired connection.
- Access to the Internet on devices like smartphones and tablets to download books, music, movies and apps, or surf the web.
- Freedom from the hassle of installing wired connections in different rooms.
How Do I Get WiFi in My Home?
To establish WiFi in your home, all you need is either a modem connected to a wireless router, or a gateway, which is a modem and wireless router in one unit. The modem provides access to the Internet, and the router broadcasts a WiFi signal, allowing your devices to connect to each other and the Internet. Any wireless-capable device can then use this signal to connect to the Internet. See Set Up Your Wireless Network with a Router for information on how to set up a router and wireless network.
Routers are available from many different manufacturers. The Wireless Gateway 1 (model numbers TG852G, TG862G, SMCD3GNV, TC8305C), Wireless Gateway 2 (model number DPC3939) and Wireless Gateway 3 (model numbers DPC3941T and TC8717) are Comcast-provided devices that connect your Internet, phone and home network. They make setting up a wireless home network as simple as possible. See About the Wireless Gateways for more information.
Is WiFi Secure?
Because WiFi devices use a broadcast signal instead of wires to connect to the Internet and teach other, it is possible for unauthorized users to access your network. This could reduce the speed of your connection or make you vulnerable to things like identity theft. Yet there are multiple ways to ensure that your wireless home network is secure.
The Wireless Gateway 1, Wireless Gateway 2 and Wireless Gateway 3 come pre-set with the best possible security options for a home network. However, if you have a router from another manufacturer, there are many different steps you can take to protect your network. See Securing Your Wireless Gateway Network for the security options available for your wireless gateway.
What is Dual-Band WiFi?
The Wireless Gateway 2 and Wireless Gateway 3 offer dual-band WiFi. Dual-band WiFi provides simultaneous WiFi to network devices using both wireless radio bands (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz). Older devices can connect to 2.4 GHz WiFi, while newer devices will enjoy the higher throughput of the 5 GHz band. With dual-band WiFi, you can enjoy:
- Less interference on 5 GHz band (improving speeds).
- Connecting multiple laptops, tablets and other devices with higher maximum throughput.