1. 420benz's Avatar
    I live in an area with very bad WiFi signal. Does it mater what provider I have?
    01-19-2020 07:33 PM
  2. mustang7757's Avatar
    If you going get a wifi booster then no , but wouldn't hurt to have a good carrier .
    01-19-2020 07:52 PM
  3. Eric Webb's Avatar
    Hi,
    Did you mean to say that you live in a 4G/LTE cell signal "dead" zone?

    If so, we do too and I checked out all the home options. You could spend $1000+ for a directional antenna system with separate indoor amplifier/distribution units. They come in single and multiple spectrum flavors but it gets expensive and messy choosing multiple vendor solutions.

    Then there are the mini base transmitters with GPS antennas for home use for about $250 (e.g. a Samsung 4G "network extender 2" which must be connected to your internet router, and may not provide whole home coverage).

    However, neither option made financial or configuration sense compared to the WiFi calling option. If you already use WiFi indoors for mobile device internet access, most vendors like Verizon offer a wifi calling option. It allows regular and video calling, text messaging and a 911 home address designation for emergencies. Plus, there's no additional equipment to buy as long as you have some kind of internet router. Doesn't matter whether you have DSL, Cable, Fibre modem internet access.

    We are in a home dead zone, and just tossed our old first gen network extender. It screwed our GPS location even using an external antenna. And it was just router device to manage.

    At home, we now put our Galaxy phones in Airplane mode, then turn on WiFi and Bluetooth radios. Works great for us. The Galaxies have great GPS signal antennas and we haven't had problems like the Network Extenders did.

    Hope this helps.
    mustang7757 and pjniez like this.
    01-19-2020 09:06 PM
  4. 420benz's Avatar
    Thanks for the info.
    01-20-2020 10:40 AM
  5. Rukbat's Avatar
    I live in an area with very bad WiFi signal. Does it mater what provider I have?
    The only way that's possible is if you're connecting to someone else's router. WiFi isn't cellular, it's the signal you get from your internet router, instead of a cable connecting the device to the router. It has nothing to do with the provider - you are the provider of the WiFi signal.

    Unless you have community WiFi provided by your internet provider. In that case you have a problem. A booster, or repeater, is places where it gets a good WiFi signal and where you get a good WiFi signal from it. If you place it where you are, it's going to get the same poor signal you do. If you place it a few hundred feet away, where there's a good signal, you'll get a poor signal from it. It has to be someplace in between, where the path is good in both directions - from the router and to you. (And yes, if it's community WiFi, your provider is using a router near you - but not quite near enough.)

    Boosters are usually used in situations like large houses - even with the router located centrally, there's a spot that has bad signal, so you put the router where there's good signal, but close enough to the place with bad signal so that place gets good signal from the booster. Or you want WiFi in a shed a couple of hundred feet from the house, so you put a booster in the yard, maybe in a weatherproof housing, with power, to repeat the router signal to the shed (and back - you need two-way communications).

    But if you're just "picking up WiFi out of the air" and it's not being provided by your provider, and you don't have a router, either there's a problem ... or you're talking about cellular, not WiFi If that's the case, some of what Eric Webb said is applicable, but the Samsung "4G network extender 2" has had all sorts of complaints about it - and there's no warranty on it, so I wouldn't touch it with your 10 foot pole. WiFi calling may be an option - check with your carrier. For internet, you can use a desktop or laptop to work as a hotspot to the phone. See Microsoft's instructions to set it up. It's pretty simple.
    01-20-2020 03:46 PM
  6. DSperber's Avatar
    As was already noted, OP's question about WiFi is ambiguous. WiFi is a casually used term mostly used in relation to router-based networks like in your home or in a restaurant, that allows getting to the internet through the nearby router via wireless (aka WiFi) connection to the router rather than through a wired ethernet cable connection to the router. But this is still for internet access, utilizing the router's IP-assigning capabilty, in this case through a wireless connection to the router.

    This is clearly in contrast to your phone always using the wireless cellular LTE network itself for phone calling functions. This same phone company wireless cellular network can also be used to provide internet connectivity to the phone, by making use of the phone company's wireless cell network. Still wireless. But is it called "WiFi"? Very ambiguous words, so you need to be more specific in discussions.

    Nevertheless, if the question is about what equipment might be usable IN A HOME WIRELESS ENVIRONMENT, in order to allow much improved wireless connection for portable devices around a large house (to improve internet connectivity wirelessly to the "main router" located in the far reaches of the home), I can highly recommend two retail systems. Both make use of the new "mesh networking" technology that really blankets the home with a strong wireless network.

    (1) Eero, which has three very attractive white modules that can be placed around the house. The "master" must be wired-connected via ethernet cable to either the cable modem's LAN port (if you don't already have a router), or via ethernet cable to a port on your existing router (possibly with its own current wireless network) to create a new second wireless network for your home.

    If connected directly to the cable modem the Eero generates its own brand new wireless network in your home, and actually functions as a real wired/wireless router. Each Eero device has two ethernet ports on it so that you can connect to it either via wired or wireless method.

    If connected to a port on your router with its own already existing current wireless network, the primary Eero unit must be set to "bridge mode" (i.e. becoming in effect just a "wireless access point (WAP)" for the primary main router, so as not to be a second true router on the network which would produce conflicts. In this more sophisticated setup the main router is still the one-and-only router for the house, controlling all wired and wireless devices connecting to it either directly or through the new Eero-hosted second wireless network. So the house would now see two wireless networks, one from the main router as best as could be seen, and the second from the Eero mesh-network devices and which would no doubt be MUCH STRONGER at distance.

    After connecting the first primary device wired to the modem, you place a second device somewhere in the middle of the house. And you configure the software wizard setup to describe generally whether your house is either (a) long and kind of narrow, or (b) more wide and square shaped. The wizard provides placement tests so that you can see if your chosen location for a device is excellent or not.

    Once the second device has been properly placed and added to the network you repeat for the third device, at a far location. If the second device was somewhere around the mid-point of the house, the third device is in another room a similar distance away. In this way the three devices provide "blanket coverage" of its wireless network to the entire house, by starting at the primary base station and relaying from one device to the next. Works fabulous.

    (2) Amplifi HD, which is more expensive than Eero.

    Same idea, i.e. mesh-network, as Eero, and again three devices in the base package.

    More sophisticated router functionality than Eero, and four wired ethernet ports on the "base station" primary unit that again connects wired to the modem via ethernet cable. Again, can alternately be configured to run in "bridge mode" when connected to a port on your primary existing router, in which case its network is a separate second wireless network in your house.

    Much larger remote devices which may present problems plugging into wall sockets if you don't have adequate vertical or horizontal clearance. But performs great.


    Note that both Eero and Amplifi HD allow adding more than just the base three devices that come in the original package. If your home needs more than three devices to provide proper mesh-coverage, you can buy individual additional units and add them to the network the same way as you did with the originals.
    01-21-2020 12:04 PM
  7. 420benz's Avatar
    This Booster has all Ethernet outlets.No problem. I don't know where to plug into the Router.
    Attached Thumbnails How to pick the best WIFi Booster-20200124_113213.jpg   How to pick the best WIFi Booster-20200124_112939.jpg  
    01-24-2020 11:45 AM
  8. DSperber's Avatar
    You haven't provided any information at all about what equipment those two pictures are of.

    Since the second pictures shows an ethernet cable going to ONT, I am going to guess you're in a FIOS area served by optical fiber to the house. There is an "ONT" (optical network terminal) in such a service, which converts optical to electronic/ethernet. Same purpose as when service comes in via coaxial and goes to a cable modem, again getting converted from coax to electronic/ethernet. In that case I suspect you would have seen an ethernet cable instead going into the "Broadband" socket on this box. Both ONT and Broadband are, in my opinion, the WAN connectors to upstream outside Internet.

    So those two connectors are the upstream WAN connections to the outside internet. And the internal 1-4 ethernet downstream LAN connectors go to 1-4 assorted locations around your house, probably in 2-socket or 3-socket wall plates that perhaps provide sockets or coax screw-on connectors for telephone and/or coaxial cable (for the FIOS TV STB/DVR) and/or ethernet. If you need more than four remote locations you can insert "wired switches" (e.g. Netgear GS105 or GS108) which provide multiple output ethernet ports from a single input ethernet cable). The switches get connected at the remote wall plate locations around your house, thus providing 1-8 wired ethernet output connectors from only 1 ethernet input cable.

    Note that if you want remote wireless capability improved in the old fashioned simple way you also can use a "wireless access point (WAP)" plugged into the wall plate. For example Netgear WAC104 or "any router set to run in access point mode", which will provide four wired ethernet sockets (like a 4-port switch) as well as a separate WiFi network radiated by the WAP or router running in "access point mode". But if you use this apprach, then each of the WAP/router-in-access-point-mode setups radiates its own unique wireless network id. The advantage of the "mesh network" approach is that you only have one single wireless network name to connect to all throughout your house, no matter where you're standing.

    I am guessing that FIOS box is perhaps installed in your basement or network closet where all of the outside electronic services get delivered to your house, and where all of the FIOS equipment has been installed onto the wall. That's where it all starts for your home, from the ONT into this wifi/router box, and then the four output ethernet cable runs to the far reaches of your house. And no doubt the wireless capability of this wifi/router is just not strong enough to deliver wifi adequately up one or two or three floors of your house and to the far reaches you need it in.

    So, as I suggested, you get one of the products I mentioned, either Eero or Amplifi HD. Because you already have a router from FIOS, you will be installing the Erro/Amplifi equpiment in BRIDGE MODE. This eliminates the "router" functionality of their system, and only implements the "mesh network" WiFi functionality. Thus their equipment is working much as the "wired switch" does, except that instead of offering 1-8 ethernet output ports from 1 ethernet input cable for devices connectable via ethernet cable to the switch, it offers any number of wireless connections all throughout the house through the 3-device "mesh wireless" network.

    So, pick one room at one end of the house where there is a wall plate connected to one of those four cables running down to the FIOS box in the basement. That will be the "base station" unit for Eero/Amplifi. Remember you need to go with the "bridge mode" approach, to disable the router functionality and facilitate their equipment strictly as a "wireless access point" connecting to the FIOS router in the basement for all DHCP IP address assignment to all wired and wireless connected devices. Connecting the "base station" through one of the LAN ports on the FIOS router is what "bridge mode" installation means, as opposed to the other normal setup where the "base station" gets plugged directly into cable modem (i.e. there is no cable company router at all) and the Eero/Amplifi boxes serve as your wired/wireless router.

    Then you can set up the other two boxes of the 3-device "mesh network" at other rooms in your house (e.g. mid-point and far away), same as if you'd connected the "base station" right next to a cable modem for normal setups.

    Hope I was clear.
    01-27-2020 06:45 PM

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