The internet has been responsible for an explosion in communication capabilities and has connected people across the globe for more than two decades. In fact, it is now virtually impossible to imagine life without it, given how much it is relied upon for various purposes.
As fascinating as the internet is, the technology which facilitates internet connections is as intriguing. Nowadays, Wi-Fi is undoubtedly the most popular means of connecting to the internet, so here is a look at the technology behind this innovation.
What is Wi-Fi?
In the early days of the internet, most people had to connect using dial-up, which was both slow and often got cut off when a landline phone was used simultaneously. Wi-Fi has been a huge step forward in terms of connecting to the internet, as it facilitates quick, easy access and also allows multiple devices to connect at once, without interrupting the connection.
As the name Wireless Fidelity (usually abbreviated to Wi-Fi) would suggest, it connects devices to the internet without the use of wires, making it incredibly convenient and accessible from a fairly long range.
The router is where all the main technology lies. This is usually connected to a computer as well as a phone socket, making use of an Ethernet cable (which can be found at a supplier like RS Components) as well as a power cable and modem.
The main responsibility of a router is to decode the radio signals sent by the wireless adapter, which are then converted to data and sent to the internet. The router also receives data from the internet and converts it to a radio signal which is then sent to the wireless adapter.
It is worth noting that most routers (or at least dual-band routers) operate two radio frequencies, which are 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. This allows multiple devices to connect using the different frequencies without interfering with each other.
The radio waves themselves are usually sent and received using an antenna which is part of the router. It is also worth noting that the router is also largely responsible for the computer’s firewall, working in conjunction with the system to ensure the connection to the internet is safe.
Wi-Fi will likely continue to be the most popular way to connect to the internet for years to come. With technology continually improving and internet speeds increasing, it will be exciting to see how it develops over the next few years.