WiFi and Ethernet are two different ways to connect to the internet.
They both bring their own advantages and disadvantages.
However, most people often confuse the interrelation between them and ask whether or not they need an Ethernet cable for WiFi.
Let’s have a detailed discussion on the topic with answers to some other similar questions.
Do You Need An Ethernet Cable For WiFi?
No, you don’t need an Ethernet cable to connect your device to WiFi.
The Ethernet cable provides a wired internet connection to the device associated.
However, WiFi provides a wireless internet connection by transmitting signals through an open medium.
That said, you might require an Ethernet cable for your WiFi if you are using any device that does not offer a built-in WiFi connectivity option.
In that case, you will either have to connect your router to that device via Ethernet cable or use a USB adapter to connect it to the router.
How To Connect WiFi To The PC
You can connect the WiFi to the computer through two different methods.
- With an Ethernet cable.
- By attaching a USB adapter and setting up the WiFi connection.
1. With An Ethernet Cable
Although WiFi connection is gaining popularity in desktop PCs, not all have it yet.
The WiFi feature is even harder to find in older desktop PCs, making it necessary for people to connect it via Ethernet cable.
The method to connect the desktop computer to the Ethernet is simple.
You will require an Ethernet cable with the length depending on the distance between your WiFi device and desktop computer.
Once you have arranged the wire, connect it to the back of the router and computer.
The connectivity port for the Ethernet is hexagonal.
The Ethernet will transfer the internet signals to the computer from the router.
In some cases, users might face issues with the Ethernet connection when configuring for the first time.
If you face the same issue, take the following steps to resolve it.
- Access the Network Settings from the main settings.
- Tap Troubleshoot option from the available options.
- Run the System Diagnosis.
- Allow the computer to troubleshoot and fix the issues.
The computer might ask for a restart if it initially failed to make the connection to the router.
You need to allow the restart and check whether the computer connects to the internet or not.
If the computer fails to connect even after running the system diagnosis, you should check the Ethernet cable.
The slight issue in the Ethernet cable might also result in the network connection failure.
2. Connect With The Network Adapter
Configuring the network adapter is an excellent option for connecting multiple PCs to the same WiFi device within a specific location.
You might not get a good speed like the Ethernet, but the movement of computers will be much easier.
We recommend purchasing TP-Link network adapters since they offer quality features at affordable prices.
Once you have connected and configured the network adapter, the computer offers a WiFi connectivity option.
Take the following steps to configure the network adapter.
- Connect the USB port to the computer.
- Insert the CD into the computer.
- Run the Autorun.exe from the autoplay window.
- Select TL-WN725N once the setup completes successfully.
- Click Install Driver and complete the installation via Installation Wizard.
- Access Windows Wireless Utility via network settings.
- Select WiFi network (TP-Link) from the available options and click Connect.
After taking these steps, the computer will connect to the router successfully.
The steps remain the same for all Windows computers.
Ethernet Vs. WiFi: Differences
Whether to choose Ethernet or WiFi for internet connectivity depends on different factors.
Let us discuss the significant differences between both types of internet connections.
Ethernet connections are made via cable, which makes the devices more restricted to a specific range.
They are generally easy to set up, but the internet option remains available to specific devices connected to the wire.
On the other hand, WiFi connections are convenient for movement.
People can quickly move devices within a limited range since WiFi provides wireless connections.
Multiple device connectivity options make it convenient for users to have a single internet source fulfilling all their internet needs.
Also, the internet connection is available for a specific area range when you use WiFi.
This makes it easy for you to use the internet on the move without any requirements of the internet connection to the wire.
Ethernet connections offer better speeds as compared to WiFi connections.
The cable transfers data directly to the device with less to no losses making the connection faster and more robust.
Typically, Ethernet cables offer a speed of up to 10 Gbps, which is faster than any other form of the internet.
WiFi connections offer less speed since they transfer data via wireless connections, resulting in more losses.
Also, the router allows the connection of multiple devices.
This results in data distribution from the primary source to multiple devices, reducing the speed.
Ethernet connections are much more secured as all the data transfer is done through cables connected to the device you are using.
This makes the connection locked and better than other forms of internet connection.
Data transferred or accessed while using the Ethernet connection is only possible via the device connected to that Ethernet cable.
When connected to the internet via WiFi, the date reaches your device through multiple devices.
This includes the router, service provider’s connection, and your device.
The data transfer through the wireless medium is also much less secure than the wired Ethernet connection.
When it comes to reliability, WiFi connections are much more reliable, considering the connectivity options.
The advent of the Fiber internet has dramatically improved the WiFi internet’s performance.
These devices are now much faster with fewer breakdown and disconnectivity problems.
On the other hand, the Ethernet connection still utilizes old-fashioned technology to allow internet access to the devices.
Also, the network makes the user restricted to a single device.
There can be other issues with the Ethernet connections, including the failure of the network from the primary source, breaking of wire, etc.
WiFi connections are much more convenient than Ethernet since they allow the user to connect multiple devices and move freely.
WiFi connections are also easy to understand for non-techies when they look to scale since you can get connected to the network with a single password.
However, Ethernet connections are much more challenging to understand and scale.
Additionally, they give internet access to devices connected with the cable only.
Ethernet Vs. WiFi: The Verdict
The choice entirely depends on one’s personal preferences.
However, it is always better to have a combination of both Ethernet and WiFi.
The router can act as the source of the internet with which you can make the connection via Ethernet cable.
This will enable you to connect one or two devices you need with faster internet connections.
On the other hand, a WiFi connection will allow you to connect multiple handheld devices that can work fine with average internet speed.
Both are often preferred in offices, homes, gaming zones, and workstations.
This makes the internet availability possible for all the devices, with some devices running at maximum speed.
Can We Connect Mobile Device With Ethernet?
Yes, you can connect your mobile device to an internet source with Ethernet.
However, it is not always a good option since you won’t be able to move far from the internet source.
Also, your device will consume lots of power due to Ethernet’s fast internet transfer speed.
To connect the mobile device via Ethernet, you need to use an Ethernet cable with a cable converter.
Simply plug the cable into the internet source and the mobile device.
A data cable can also act as an Ethernet if you allow the data transfer option through USB.
Ethernet connection on a mobile can be a great option when you don’t have access to the WiFi.
With Ethernet, you will be able to connect your mobile to any internet source via cable.
How To Set Up A WiFi Network
Setting up a WiFi network can be tricky and challenging if you have no experience connecting the networks.
Even setting up a straightforward WiFi network requires basic knowledge of the IP.
Here are the three steps to set up a WiFi.
1. Purchase A Quality Router
The router plays the most crucial part in setting up a quality WiFi connection.
If you choose a device with fewer features and area coverage, you might not get a quality internet connection.
One of the best TP-Link devices we recommend is the AX3000 Dual Gang Gigabit WiFi Router, which offers the best features.
Some of them include:
- Use of OFDMA technology that offers a fast data transfer rate.
- Low network latency with a network shield.
- Improved battery life with wired connectivity option.
- Alexa compatibility.
The device is a good fit for homes and small offices with the capacity to connect a maximum number of devices.
If you are looking for larger area coverage for your office or a multiple-floor building, you should consider other options.
You can also consider purchasing broadband devices if you are looking for a more convenient option.
These devices are smaller and can make a wireless connection to the internet.
2. Connect Router To The Internet
The next step is to connect the router to the internet.
For getting the internet connection to your router, you will have the following options.
- Network connection through LAN port.
- Internet connection through SIM card companies.
- Fiber internet from fiber internet service provider.
The choice of the internet service ultimately depends on your personal preferences.
3. Configure The Settings
Once your device has an internet connection, you need to configure the settings to allow it to access the internet.
The steps for device configuration vary from brand to brand.
However, the basics will remain the same.
- Find the router through your device via WiFi or Ethernet. (The name of the WiFi router will be mentioned on the box or the internal router.)
- Type the IP address mentioned in the device in your web browser.
- Log in to your portal by adding the login credentials mentioned on the back of the router box or internal guide.
- Go to the Wireless network settings page.
- Tap the Manual Set up channel option and confirm the setup.
- Allow the router to reboot.
Once you have followed the steps, you will be able to set up your WiFi connection.
Typically, the password is written on your portal, which you can also change by following the password change settings.
WiFi Connectivity Issues (Causes, Fixes)
There can be different reasons your device might face trouble connecting to the WiFi.
Here are a few significant causes with their fixes.
1. Broken Ethernet Cable
A broken Ethernet cable won’t be able to transmit data at a faster speed.
This will result in connectivity issues and the device will have no access to the internet.
Your device might sometimes connect to the network but won’t be able to access the data because of slow data transfer.
Fix: Change The Cable
The easiest way to fix the issue is by comparing the internet speed with one device connected to the WiFi while the other is connected to the Ethernet.
If the internet speed via Ethernet is less than that of the WiFi, you need to change the cable wire.
2. Slow Internet
Your device might face internet connectivity issues when the router receives slow internet speed from the server.
This causes problems with the connection and your router might also show red light.
Fix: Contact Your Internet Service Provider
This issue is generally from the mainstream server-side and can only be fixed by your internet service provider.
You need to contact them and ask about the slow internet resulting in the connectivity issues as well.
3. Issues With The Router
Issues with the router are another reason for the WiFi connectivity issues.
Sometimes the router might face bugs after running for long hours.
This also happens when there are issues with the internal connections of the router.
Fix: Troubleshoot The Router
You need to close the router for a while and then reopen it.
This will solve any minor bugs in the router and allow it to work correctly.
If this technique does not work, you should get your router checked by a technician.
4. Specific Devices Not Connecting
Sometimes you might face connectivity issues with specific devices.
In this case, the problem is from the internal network side, not from the router.
This typically happens when the network settings of that specific device are changed.
Also, some minor issues like the router being out of reach or WiFi being closed might become the reason for this issue.
Before proceeding with the fix, it is better to check whether the device is within reach of the router and whether WiFi is opened.
Fix: Reset The Network Settings
To fix the issue, you need to reset the network settings and allow the device to make a connection to any available WiFi connection within reach.
The network connections can be reset by accessing the network settings of that particular device from the main settings.
5. Unavailability Of WiFi Connections
You might face unavailability of network connections issues sometimes.
The issue generally arises when the router automatically resets all the settings.
The router completes this automatic reset when it receives any network security issues.
Fix: Configure The Settings
To fix the issue, you need to configure the settings again.
This way, you will be creating the new password, username, and connectivity name.
All the previous data of the WiFi will vanish, which you won’t be able to access.
Simply type your router’s IP address into the browser and set the wireless networks again to reconfigure the settings.