How to Tell the Difference between Modem and Router

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Many Internet service providers offer modem units / router together, but a modem is not the same thing as a router. To understand exactly what a modem is, its important for you to buy your own modem and stop paying $8 $15 a month to rent one from your Internet service provider. Here i am going to share some basic difference between modem and router.

A router and modem are really two different devices. If you are buying your own modem, you may need to also buy a router.

What is a Router

A router is used to share your Internet connection among multiple devices. A typical router from Router200 is used to create and host a Wi-Fi network that multiple devices can connect. It probably has multiple Ethernet ports and allows you to connect multiple devices.

The router connects to the Internet via the modem and the router itself receives a single public IP address on the Internet. Servers communicate with the router, and the router routes the traffic to the appropriate devices on your home network.

But with just a router, you can not actually connect to the Internet. The router must be connected to the Internet through an Ethernet cable. You need a modem to do so.

What is a Modem

The modem communicates with your Internet service provider, and you’ll need the right type of modem that will work with your ISP infrastructure.

The modem connects to any kind of infrastructure you have – cable, telephone, satellite, or fiber – and gives you a standard Ethernet cable as output that you can plug into any router (or a single computer) and get an Internet connection.

How to Tell the Difference between Modem and Router

Combined Routers and Modems

Some Internet service providers offer a modem and router in a single device. The software used on it to provide both functions, acting as a modem that communicates with your ISP and functioning as a router to create a home network Wi-Fi.

ISPs are offering all-in-one devices like these, but there’s no reason you have to use one in the same box.

Buy your own Modem

Buy your own modem is an easy way to save money on your Internet. Instead of renting your modem from your Internet service provider, you can buy your own. You can then return the original modem to your ISP and remove that charge from your monthly bill.

Of course, if you have a unit modem / router combination, you will also need to purchase a router. The router  that ISP offers, may not have the latest technologies such as 802.11ac and 5 GHz Wi-Fi, so you may be better off buying your own router anyway.

You can use any wireless router you want, but the modem you purchase has to be approved by your Internet service provider and function with its network. For better understanding, You can think that your router is a device that is a part of your home network and modem is a device that is part of the ISP’s network.


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