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Difference between wireless access point and router

As technology grows new wireless devices come into the market. The new devices come into the market in order to help and maintain your home or business connectivity easier. To assist you in planning and assessing your home and business network, this article will comprehensively examine the similarities and differences between routers and access points(AP). 

What is access point:

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Different devices are used in the wireless based network. In  a wireless network, access point is the primary device that handles all the operations on the user side. Wireless access point connects all the user end devices and transmits all the data over the internet. All the devices that are available in the local area network are connected to the access point. As the wireless access point comes with wireless antennas so the access point easily increases the coverage of the Wi-Fi signals. A lot of users can connect with the single access point. Ethernet is frequently used to link wireless access points to a router or switch. Wireless network almost used in every home. Wireless access point is the most useful device in our home, offices, etc.

What is router:

Router is the main device that is used in the wireless network. All the main links are dropped in the router. Wireless access point is directly connected to the router by using the Ethernet cable and the router is directly connected to the main link that is coming from the internet service provider. The main function of the router is to route the different private IPs on the one public IP that is directly connected to the internet. The router allows all the user end devices like mobile phone, laptop, etc. that are directly connected to the internet by using the access point and also allow communication between the devices that are available in the local area network and also communicate with the device that is available in wide area network. When a local device requests to leave the local network and access the Internet, routers are aware of the request.

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When a router is installed and numerous devices are connected to it, it functions as a gateway. Typically, residential routers come equipped with wireless radios that enable wireless connections to Wi-Fi devices. Access points, however, fill that function in a professional setting. By including firewalls or creating/establishing network rules, routers can also provide an additional degree of security. The main function of the router is to connect the different networks and allow communication between the devices that are connected to the different networks. Router can easily manage small businesses, offices, and home networks. Router can provide network connectivity to numerous computers and devices at once, whether wired or wireless (when a wireless router is used).

Difference between Access Point and Router:

The access point is the small device that uses at the end of the network where all the user end devices are connected to the internet and the router is the device that uses behind the access point. The access point is directly connected to the router by using the cable. All the requests that are generated by the user end devices first come on the access point and then it is forwarded to the router. In the network, router act as a gateway that creates the local area network and manages all the traffic of the devices that are available in the local area network.

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Router is the intelligent device that connects two different networks. As discussed before router is an intelligent device so the router knows which packet is sent outside the network and which packet is sent in the local area network. All the routing-based decisions are done in the router device. On the other hand access point is the device that creates the wireless local area network(WLAN). Access point is the best device for the big wireless local area network. All the new access points come with the latest technology. It also comes with latest encryption techniques so it provides the best security.

Check what are the 4 main difference below:

1, Connections:

The ordinary wireless access point directly provides the Wi-Fi signal to the user end devices so that the user end devices are easily connected to the internet and share the information between the different devices.  Most of the offices and big companies expand their network by using switches and wireless access points in order to cover a larger area so every employee in the company or in the offices can use the internet and share information with the employee.

A router is the core device in which the main links are dropped so the offices or in the companies’ routers are unable to provide the Wi-Fi signal. You can plug an access point straight into some modems without a router because they come with DCHP and NAT built in. However, it’s better to keep the modem and the router apart in bigger networks because the router is made to manage the bulk of your network settings.

2, Functions:

The main function of wireless access point is to connect the user end devices to the internet. And router is the core device in the network that takes all the decisions related to the routing. A router can behave like an access point but the access point cannot behave like the router.

3, Users:

Access point is a very useful device for big offices, homes, and for companies. Small ordinary Wi-Fi routers only use in small offices because only support a small number of users. But access point can support a large number of users and also cover a larger area. Whenever you take the connection from the internet service provider first consider the size of your company and number of the users that are using the internet in your offices. All that things are very helpful in order to take a decision regarding to the network device.

4, Coverage:

As discussed before in the above point that the access point is a very useful device for big offices, homes, etc. So it covers a larger area and also supports a large number of users. A router can only support a limited number of users and cover a smaller area.

Conclusion

Both device’s access point and the router perform under different conditions.  For the big companies If you want a more efficient and reliable wireless connection then you need to buy an access point which is the best device for this type of network.  Most of the big firms are used wireless access point because It comes with the latest technology and covers a larger area and also support more user than router. A router is the best device for small networks. In the end, a wireless router can be configured to work as an access point but an AP cannot function as a router.

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