WIRELESS NETWORK FOR GAMING
Today, we rely mostly on Wi-Fi when using our devices at home. Whether it’s watching movies online or scrolling through our social media feeds, we’re constantly dependent on the convenience and mobility that a wireless connection provides. Yet, when it comes to gaming on a wireless network, there are various misconceptions that frequently come into question. We’ve rounded up 5 common ones to set things straight.
Wired connections are touted to be more reliable than wireless ones as they tend to provide high speeds with no interference. However, unreliable wireless connections are simply due to congested airwaves. If you’re using a standard router, it’s likely your connection gets congested and unreliable during peak hours as everyone from your neighbor to other family members are all on the same frequencies.
Picture this: most routers today only use 25% of the 5Ghz spectrum—the other 75% are restricted for radar and military purposes. This can be likened to many cars using only one lane to get to a destination. Utilizing Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS), Portal’s FastLanes™ make 50% more frequencies available to you. This means while everyone else is stuck one a one-lane highway, you get two additional lanes to bypass traffic.
Traditional router manufacturers will have you believe that only big antennas provide reliable connections. The truth is: multiple antennas are crucial, but size isn’t everything. Spreading the antennas out and improving reliability with beamforming, which sends signals in the direction of the receiving device, is much more important. Portal uses 9 antennas, each evenly distributed and angled in different directions. This allows the router to provide a better connection than the common three or four external antennas used by regular routers.
High AC numbers in gaming routers allude to the maximum theoretical bandwidth the specific router can support. This is achieved by adding more dedicated radios to their solutions. Unfortunately, every client is limited by its own number of antennas. This is usually 1 for smartphones and 2–3 for laptops. Adding more antennas on the router doesn’t increase the throughput per device, it merely enables more devices. Without FastLanes™, all that does is create an even more congested highway. And instead of improving your speed, it does the opposite.
Portal’s AC2400 chipset provides you with up to 1733 Mbps across 4 antennas on the 5Ghz frequencies. Theoretically, your notebook gets half of that. But with real-world limitations, you’re likely closer to 650 Mbps. For reference, Netflix in Ultra HD requires 25 Mbps. This means that congestion is a much bigger enemy of stable Wi-Fi, not the AC number.
Mesh networks function like range extenders or repeaters without the hassle of changing Wi-Fi SSIDs. However, using a mesh network is slower than a direct connection as it halves your bandwidth to communicate from the node to the main source, adding latency travel from point to point. In addition, network traffic contributes to existing congestion. Portal FastLanes™ can help mitigate that to a certain degree, but if you ultimately decide to add a second Portal router to form a mesh network, be sure to still connect to the main network if you intend to game.
A good router is easy to set up, isn’t intrusive, and is easily accessible. Portal does just that with an app for iOS and Android—providing fuss-free, easy setup with all the controls and security you need to manage your home network.