When buying a router, one of the important factors you should consider is beamforming. This WiFi Technology helps deliver a better signal-to-noise ratio. In simple terms, beamforming helps users get stronger and clearer signals.
Other important router features that boost signal include the antennas and coverage ability. The positioning of the router also determines how effectively it works in your space.
This article explores the meaning of beamforming and why you should consider it.
What Is Beamforming?
Beamforming is a technology feature in wireless internet routers. It involves directing a wireless signal toward a precise connected device. For instance, if your router has 3 antennas, beamforming directs the signal from the 3 antennas toward a specific device, making the signal stronger for that device.
Beamforming is effective in improving wifi signals for devices. It combines multiple antennas to deliver a strong signal for the targeted device.
Why Should a Router Have Beamforming?
If you have encountered router options with beamforming, here are some of the benefits to get from such a router and why you should buy it:
Beamforming minimizes signal interference from other devices
It creates a strong internet connection especially if you need a perfect signal for a particular device. For instance, if your laptop keeps disconnecting from WIFI when browsing, beamforming works to deliver a specific connection to the laptop.
Beamforming enhances the effectiveness of MU-MIMO which allows multiple users to get a clear and direct signal from the router.
Downsides of Beamforming
Beamforming has its shortcomings and does not always make the wifi signal better. Some of the downsides of Beamforming are:
- Beamforming is power-consuming because of the resources it has to pull to function
- It can hinder other devices from connecting to wifi
- It has complex mathematics and algorithms and hence requires the use of an advanced DSP chip.
Types Of Beamforming
These are the techniques used by beamforming and they include:
Uses application of precoding to analog signal after DAC and before transmission on air
Uses application of precoding to digital signal after DAC and before transmission on air.
This one applies both analog and digital beamforming techniques
Is Beamforming Worth It?
Before buying a router with beamforming, being aware of what advantages you have over one that does not have beamforming is necessary. If your router has beamforming, you get these advantages:
- Strong signal for your wireless internet devices
- It works together with MU-MIMO to enhance signal strength for all your devices.
While there are many advantages to such a router, we cannot overlook the extra cost you have to bear for a router with beamforming. Routers with beamforming are more expensive than those without. Check out some of the best routers with beamforming:
What Is Implicit Beamforming?
If you have older wifi devices without the 802.11 ac hardware, Implicit beamforming is where the router uses beamforming to improve the wifi connection for these older devices. Older devices have a limitation when it comes to reaping benefits from beamforming technology. Implicit beamforming eliminates that limitation for older wifi devices.
What is Explicit Beamforming?
Explicit Beamforming is where devices with 802.11ac specification use beamforming to boost wifi connection.
What is Beamforming+?
Beamforming+ is a highlighted feature in some router brands. It is a fine-tuned wifi design that delivers improved range and signal for wifi-connected devices.
Beamforming VS MU-MIMO
Both beamforming and MU-MIMO are wifi technologies aimed at improving the signal of the wifi devices. Beamforming works to deliver a great signal for a specific wifi device while MU-MIMO allows your router to connect to multiple devices at the same time.
MU-MIMO works with beamforming to deliver a focused signal to all the connected wifi devices.
Do all routers have beamforming?
Not all routers have beamforming. Those with beamforming usually have the feature indicated and are pricier than those without.
Does beamforming interfere with MU-MIMO?
Beamforming does not interfere with MU-MIMO. Rather, the two work together to deliver an improved wifi signal for multiple devices.
Can you turn off beamforming in a router?
Yes. Beamforming can be turned off via the router settings or through the web interface.
Beamforming is an amazing thing for wifi devices in the house. Routers with beamforming also incorporate MU-MIMO to enable the other wifi devices to benefit from a directed wifi signal.
Beamforming comes with a few shortcomings that include high power consumption and hardware complexity. If you plan on buying a router with beamforming, add a few dollars to your wallet because routers with beamforming are pricier than those without.