Routers, especially the current ones, can be costly as they can cost hundreds of dollars. Most people are unwilling to invest in a router but still enjoy fast internet with good coverage. That is why it is essential to find a router with advanced features and at a reasonable price. That can be very hard as it is easy to find a cheap router; the problem is the performance. That is why we have compiled this article so that we can make your work easy.
If you are looking for a wifi router under $100 and one that will still provide you with high-speed internet and great coverage, then read on. We have compiled a list of the six best routers under 100. They all have great features, and you will enjoy using them. We have also listed a buying guide to know what to look for when buying a cost-effective router.
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Let us now guide you in finding the best wireless routers under $100. Now that we have reviewed the best router under $100, let us look at the essential features. Below are the vital elements that any router should have and what you should consider before buying them.
The dual-band is also another essential feature to watch out for, and the router should be able to support both 2.4GHz and 5GHz. That will ensure that you get better overall performance. 5GHz is excellent if you don’t want many interferences, and it is also less crowded. Routers with the dual-band feature also have two or more antennas that are adjustable.
That way, they can maintain both bands simultaneously without dropping the speed of the signal. You can also go for a router that supports tri-band settings, two 5GHz bands, and one 2.4GHz. These tri-bands are great if you live in a household that has heavy traffic. It is also great for gamers and people who do a lot of audio and video streaming.
√ Supported Connections
Considering your needs is very important when buying a router. Access the number of devices that will be connected to the network. The next thing is to think about what the devices will be accessing, like connecting to NAS (network access storage) using an integrated USB port. If your devices are wired, make sure you have a router with many Ethernet ports you need. Most routers have four ports, but you get one if you need a router with more ports.
Most current routers provide you with high speed, but it is the specs that matter the most. You have to know your needs first before buying a router. If you want a router that will support multiple players with no lagging, you need an AC router. That also applies to when you want simultaneous 4K video streaming, requiring the modern WI-FI standard. Even though an AC router under 100$ does not have all the advanced features, it will do a great job, especially in a traditional home setting.
√ Size of Your Home
The size of your home is essential, especially when it comes to coverage. The size of each room is also one of the factors to consider. If you live I an apartment or small home, then a router with moderate reach will be enough for you. However, if you live in a large house, it will be hard for the router’s signal to reach all the corners of your home. That is why you need to get a mesh system, especially if you have a large house.
Make sure that the WI-FI router you buy, no matter the price, can provide the same signal strength all through the house. However, it would help if you kept in mind that the range will vary depending on your house size and the composition of your walls. The design of the walls will determine the signal interference, and many other factors will affect the range. Unless you are using a WI-FI extender, go for a router that can cover 2000 square feet, which is enough for an average home.
In this first segment, we review six of the best wireless routers under 100 on the market as of now:
ASUS AC1750, which 5G WI-FI powers, is one of the cheapest and best routers you can find in the market. It can reach 450Mbpa at 2.4 GHz, and on the 5GHz band, it can go as high as 1300Mbps. With the higher bandwidth, you will increase WI-FI to a higher capacity and enjoy it at home. If you have many devices that rely on the same network, it is officially time to upgrade your connectivity. That way, you won’t have to struggle too much with bad connections.
√ Simultaneous maximum speeds
√ Excellent coverage
√ Fast WI-FI speed
√ Parental Control
√ Easy to set up
× Not easy to configure
Are you looking to upgrade to a better WI-FI? Then the NETGEAR Wi-Fi router has got you covered. It is a very affordable WI-FI and one that guarantees you excellent coverage. You will get up to 1200 sq. feet of coverage, which means you won’t have to move around the house looking for a place with better coverage. It also features Dual Band streaming and high-powered antennas that ensure internet in every corner of your home. This WI-FI network is also built for fast streaming as you can get a wireless speed of up to 1200 Mbps, and that is the speed for those activities that are very demanding, like gaming and HD streaming.
√ Advanced technology available
√ High sped connections
√ Wired Ethernet ports
√ Secure connections
√ USB connections
√ Easy to set up
× Inadequate documentation and tech support
The Linksys is a WI-FI router that is affordable and can give you all the benefits of a fast and reliable working WI-FI. It is well known for its broad coverage as it can provide consistent internet of up to 1500 square feet of coverage. With that type of coverage, you don’t have to sit in one place just because that is where the internet is strong. You will be able to move around the house and still have strong internet on all your devices. It can also support up to fifteen devices, which means all your devices will be covered if you use this router.
√ Wide WI-FI coverage
√ High-quality speed
√ Simple to set up
√ 15 plus devices
× Problems with configuration
If you are looking for a router that will provide you with uninterrupted internet for streaming and gaming, then TP-Link AC1900 is the way to go. It comes with high WI-FI speeds and MU-MIMO features like QoS work together and Airtime Fairness. These two will help you achieve a better gaming and streaming experience. With the wave 2 MU-MIMO and Dual-Band WI-FI, you will be able to connect to several devices all at once. That means you have many smart home devices, and you will be able to handle all of their networking needs.
√ Efficient and optimal performance
√ Works with smart home devices
√ Easy to set up and manage
√ Secure connections
√ Wide coverage
× Slower 5 GHz signal
The D-Link WI-FI router is one of the most cost-efficient routers that can give you the full benefits. It features high gain antennas that make it easy to achieve more comprehensive coverage throughout your home. That means when you want to access the internet, you don’t have to go to a particular spot as you can access it from anywhere in your home. It also comes with four Gigabit Ethernet ports that are very fast hence provide you with high-speed connectivity. Another great feature about this router is its app to manage all the intuitive user interface networks.
√ Multiple user technology
√ Simultaneous dual-band
√ Secure connections
√ High gain antennas
√ Parental controls
× Not great for gamers
If you are looking for a great-performing router but on a budget, you need to check out the Tenda AC1200. It is one of the best routers for under one hundred dollars, and it comes with excellent features. This router can offer you a data rate as high as 1167 Mbps, which is faster than any 11n compliant router. It is very stable ad quickly, and that is why it is the ideal choice for online gaming and HD streaming that is lag-free; you will be able to enjoy all bandwidth-intensive tasks as there will be no interruptions.
√ Compatible with leading internet providers
√ Fast and secure connections
√ High-speed connections
√ Up to 20 devices
√ Four antennas
× No Giga LAN ports or Open VPN
We finish off by answering some of the hard questions about the best routers under 100:
Q1. What is an internet router?
A. It is a networking device that is designed to forward data packets between different computer networks. Routers are the ones that are responsible for performing traffic directing functions. When you send data through the internet, like an email or a web page, you send it in data packets, and the router ensures that it reaches its desired destination. You connect a router data line, and when a data packet is sent to one of the lines, the router can determine the network address and know where the information is supposed to be sent to. The most common types of routers are small office routers designed to send IP packets between the internet and home computers, and there are also home routers for home-usage.
Q2. Will a new router heighten my internet speed?
A. That will significantly depend on the new router. If it is a single-band router, then your needs may outweigh the router’s capabilities. Check out how far the router is from your device and if it is close and still the signal is lacking, you need a new router. You can also consider adding the WI-FI range by using an extender to ensure that the router services all your devices. The most common case where a new router will not help is if the original internet signal from the internet service provider or the modem is very low.
Q3. When should I upgrade my router?
A. We all know that technology evolves very quickly because when you buy a device, you will notice a newer version on the way or even already there. To see whether you need a router upgrade, you have to figure out what your router cannot or can do. You will do that by reading the specifications that are found on the vendor’s website. For a general rule, if you have used the router for more than three years, you probably need an upgrade. It is not wrong to buy a new router, but you have to ensure that the upgrade will provide better results than the previous one you used.
Q4. Should I purchase my internet router?
A. When you visit internet providers, they give you an option to rent a router as part of a particular package. Even if you see that buying a router will increase the total costs, it will significantly lower the monthly internet bill. Tech experts recommend that you buy your own separate devices. If you are trying to keep things simple, a combo unit will help you reach your goals. All that said, it is evident that you will save money by buying your internet router.
The list of routers above is of cost-effective routers that are of very high quality. They are all under 100$ and will significantly improve your internet experience. The first thing you need to consider is your household needs. That way, it can be easy to identify the type of router you need and the one that will suit your home the best. It would be best to place the router in a central place in your home as that will give the signal the best chance of coverage. After setting the best routers under 100 up, use your phone to test the movement and range around your house.