In this day and age, almost everyone uses wifi, or wireless fidelity for one reason or another. Some people use it to work from home, others for school or an online education. Some people use internet for entertainment purposes such as games, movies, and TV shows.
Whether we like or not, wifi has become a part of life, even infiltrating such things as home security systems and appliances.
According to a 2016 study, approximately three billion people access the internet daily, a number that has only been growing since its launch in 1995.
Every year new technological advances come out that make connecting to the world wide web so much easier. A wireless access point or WAP is the link in the system that broadcasts throughout your home or business.
What Is A Wireless Access Point?
In order to have a home internet connection you need a modem,
and a Wireless Access Point, more commonly know as a router.
What happens is your cable or ethernet connection goes into a modem which turns the data into an internet connection. It then sends the data to your router to broadcast throughout the space in which you want wifi.
One of the biggest problems internet users face is a faulty Wireless Access Point, which is why when buying one for your home or business proper research should be done.
Different Types Of Wireless Access Points
Single Radio Access Points:
This is your most basic Access Point. Most of them work in the b/g standard but can also be selected to work in the IEEE 802.11a standard.
Good for small homes and apartments.
Dual Radio Access Points:
A dual radio Access Point would be the next step up.
while one channel works in IEEE 802.11 the other functions in IEEE 802.11 b/g/n.
Works for large homes, or small businesses. Often used for public wifi.
External Antennas/ In-built Antennas:
When getting a WAP an important factor to take into consideration, is the area that you want to broadcast to. While an Access Point with a built-in antenna may be smaller and less expensive, the area to which the broadband reaches is significantly smaller. Whereas one with an external antenna, may take up more space it will have a much larger broadcast area.
Advantages To Using A WAP
The use of Access Points had become a standard in most job industries. Used more and more for emails, texts and now online group calls, having a fast connection to the web can be a huge jumpstart to someone trying to start or further their career. For families, the use of the internet can be used for entertainment, as well as a powerful tool for learning.
As well, with the growth of social media, Wifi is becoming more popular for staying in contact with old friends and making new ones.
Staying connected is important to a lot of people, and having a strong internet connection is necessary for being able to be on and active whenever you want.
TOP TEN WIRELESS ACCESS POINTS:
10. Edimax Pro Access Point (CAP300)
This is your classic ceiling mount business Wireless Access Point. Whether you own a coffee shop or record store, or simply want professional level connection in your house or apartment this style of Router is the basic design. With a fast reliable high-speed connection, this router will get the job done.
*an easy hardware setup
*covers large spaces with wifi due to high receiver sensitivity
*good configuration options
*occasionally drops connection
*frequency noise can interrupt the signal making it spotty at times
*difficult software installation
09. TP-Link N300 Wireless Wi-Fi Mini Router
If you’re looking for a small portable Access point this should be your first choice. With a built-in power cord, it removes the need for an external power adapter and makes all it the more attractive. This device also has a built-in USB port making connecting it to your computer a breeze. Its USB port can also be used for sharing files with family and friends and charges it simultaneously. While its signal is not the strongest it can still be used for in your home and can connect to larger devices to create a larger field of wifi.
*small slender design makes it easy to bring on the go so you’re never without the connections you need
*it comes with an external switch so that you can choose whatever mode suits your situation best
*provides a stable service that gives you the confidence to hit the road
*because of it’s size and portability this device does not have a super strong connection
*new technology that makes this Access Point possible is not yet fully developed making for small possible bugs
*too many devices on at once can crash the Router
*easy to lose because of it’s small size
08. CISCO SYSTEMS Access Point with PoE
This Access point combines advanced security technology with a small compact body to bring a suitable all around Router for any of your internet needs. It also can be powered over Ethernet which reduces the amount of wires needed to operate. An easy setup helps you spend less time messing with the Access Point and more time doing what you love.
*a contemporary look makes it a stylish asset to your small business or home
*when combined with other Wireless Access Points it can provide a wide coverage area
*easy to both install and use
*occasionally drops connections to IOS devices
*a slower connection makes it harder to do such things as watch movies or videos, or stream music
*difficult software download
*fragile plastic body
07. NETGEAR ProSAFE Access Point (WN203 – 100NAS)
The NETGEAR ProSAFE Wireless Access Point has all the basic necessities that a home or apartment needs. With a plain and simple design, it will cover a small area suitably providing a web connection for the whole family. With the ability to power over Ethernet (PoE) to eliminate the need for external power adapters. However, it can be hooked up to an external antenna greatly boosting the service area
*standalone configuration for easy setup
*a stable connection, for a good reliable connection
*plastic build so that although lighter, it is more flimsy
*built-in antenna provides a weaker signal than some may like
*power cycle required every two weeks or so
06. TRENDnet TEW Access Point
This TrendNet Access Point is made to have a high-speed internet connection, for wireless or wired. It works with IEEE 802.11n (draft 2.0), IEEE 802.11g and 802.11b standards, for smooth durable access. This access point comes built with two detachable antennas for quick easy storage. It has a simple user interface with a one touch network connection feature.
*easy intuitive setup for the inexperienced user
*reliable transfer rates
*fast customer support
* Lacks Gigabit for Ethernet Ports
* Limited to 300mb/s wireless transfer rate
* Does not support DD-WRT Custom Firmware
* bulky in size and design, making it somewhat unattractive
05. Ubiquiti Unifi Ap Wireless Access Point
A dual radio performance Wireless Access Point, such as this one is usually used in places such as hospitals. Most often set up as a part of a network of routers, this device is strong but has limited range. Slightly difficult to set up but well worth the trouble if you have a large house or yard. This style of WEP is typically used to boost the power of a hotspot or other less powerful wifi broadcasting device.
*small and reliable
*better than consumer WEPs but more affordable than industrial routers.
*professional quality build
*basic tech knowledge required
*small broadcast range
04. Ubiquiti Networks Enterprise AP Unifi
The AP Unified should be your first choice for a large house or office. The Access Point has a strong signal and sizable service area. It has one LED to show if it’s broadcasting, that can be disabled should the need arise.
Can be concealed as a smoke detector. Easy mounting, with good customer support.
*incredible coverage area
*difficult software configuration
03. Ubiquiti Networks PRO Access Point
Perfect for use in your small business, this pro-WEP has everything you need for bringing wifi to your shop. can be powered by Ubiquiti Networks UniFi Switch 802.3af/802.3at PoE+ compliant switch Ubiquiti Networks Gigabit PoE Adapter (48V, 0.5A). The router comes with everything needed to mount and install it, and it is good for people who need a lot of bandwidths.
*large bandwidth access
*wide broadcast range
*difficult user interface
*occasionally drops connections
02. Dual Band Gigabit PoE Access Point
With a Simultaneous Dual Band 802.11ac connection, this WEP is perfect for providing the internet to you and your family. The package it comes in contains three different sized mounting clips for your wall or ceiling. This device delivers a strong connection for home use, with the latest 802.11ac standards.
*sleek design allows for smooth concealment
*dual radio allows for a stronger connection
*long range connection
*sloppy user interface
*only one SSID per frequency
01. (3 Minute Setup) Touchscreen Wi-Fi Wireless Router
This state of the art touch-screen router is the number one choice for this list with a user-friendly interface and a fast reliable connection that will provide you with a well balanced strong reliable connection for your home or business. The device detects powers on and gives step by step instructions to get your internet connection reaching where you want it to reach.
*easy to set up
*easy to use
*large service area
*small chance of getting computer bugs after time
Before making any final decisions on what Wireless Access Point to purchase several things need to be taken into consideration.
First of all is your budget. How much are you willing to spend on a new router?
The second thing to think about is the necessity. How big of an area do you need to cover with Wifi? Is the biggest Access Point needed?
The third and final thing to consider is speed. What is your main purpose going to be for your internet? If you have a business a high-speed connection can be a requirement. But if you’re looking for a home connection, unless you have a large family that will be using bandwidth all at once, a super fast connection isn’t necessarily needed.
After taking all these into consideration you can make an educated decision on what Wireless Access Point you want to buy.
Whatever your reason for needing a connection to the web, having the knowledge of what you’re getting is a valuable asset. Many people go to buy an item without prior research of what they’re buying, which most often results in an unsatisfactory product.
Another problem in this day and age with the use of online shopping is untrustworthy websites. You want to make sure you’re buying from an established website.
So now with this newly acquired knowledge, I hope that you can go on to buy the best possible Wireless Access Point for your own situation.