Technology Explained

5 Home Network Issues Solved With Google Wifi

Andy Betts 07-02-2017

Google Wifi is Google’s latest foray into hardware. It replaces the company’s old OnHub device, and has the potential to revolutionize home Wi-Fi.


Its combination of cutting-edge technology and stylish design means it’s able to tackle all the problems you normally associate with wireless routers. If you’re struggling with home Wi-Fi, then read on because this may be the solution you’ve been waiting for.

Google Wifi and Mesh Networks

Google Wifi taps into the trend of mesh networking Are Mesh Nets The Future of The Internet? Mesh nets are powerful decentralized networks that may change the way we use the internet. Here's how they work. Read More , also seen in products from the likes of Eero and Orbi The 6 Best Mesh Wi-Fi Networks for Your Home If you've been suffering Wi-Fi dead zones around the house, then one of these mesh Wi-Fi networks may be just what you need. Read More . It’s different than a normal network where you get a direct connection between point A and point B — your phone to your router, for instance.

A mesh network contains a “mesh” of interconnected devices (or “nodes”) that are capable of relaying data back and forth to destinations. Instead of that singular connection, you instead connect to the nearest node in the mesh and the data is always transmitted via the shortest, fastest, or most efficient route through the mesh.

In the case of a Google Wifi network, it means you get a main router plus additional puck-like devices that act as wireless access points around your home. They give you much better coverage (both in terms of range and performance) and are seen as a single network: you only need to enter the password once to connect to any node on the network.

You can achieve similar results using a Wi-Fi extender Wi-Fi Extenders vs. Powerline Adapters: How to Fix Poor Wireless Signals If your router's Wi-Fi signals are weak and unreliable and you can't seem to find a solution, the answer may lie in Wi-Fi extenders and/or powerline adapters. Read More , but it’s more complicated to set up and you often have to connect to each router separately.


Google Wifi Gives You Better Coverage

The immediate benefit of Google Wifi is that it can give you better wireless coverage throughout your home.

Google Wifi is available in two options. The single unit has a range of 1,500 feet and is fine for an apartment. The three-pack covers 4,500 feet and is ideal if you need your Wi-Fi coverage to extend upstairs or out into the yard. You can add even more range if you live in a particularly large house.

5 Home Network Issues Solved With Google Wifi wifi points

With the three-pack, you’re able to position each Wi-Fi point around your home to achieve maximum coverage: one at the front of the house, one at the back, and one upstairs, for example. The Wifi app will even help with optimal positioning to ensure you have no dead zones (areas where there’s no signal at all).


And because a mesh network treats every Wi-Fi point as part of the same network, you only need one ID and password for the whole house.

Google Wifi Gives You Faster Speeds

Setting up a normal Wi-Fi router is a fine art Wireless Feng Shui: How to Optimize Wi-Fi Reception in Your House Setting up a Wi-Fi router for optimum coverage isn't as easy as you think. Use these tips to cover your whole house with Wi-Fi! Read More . The further a signal has to travel, and the more physical obstacles (such as walls) it has to pass through, the weaker the signal becomes. This is not an issue on mesh networks where you have multiple Wi-Fi points.

With a Google Wifi setup, your devices always connect to the nearest node. As you move around the house, your devices seamlessly disconnect from one and reconnect to another. As a result, you always have the fastest and most stable connection available, which is rarely true with a single router setup.

That’s not to say that there’s no speed loss when you connect several nodes together. You just won’t notice the effect because each node is still faster than your internet connection (unless you have a very fast connection in excess of 250 Mbps).


Google Wifi Is Simple to Set Up

Mesh networking sounds complicated, but in the case of Google Wifi it could hardly be simpler.

The system is effectively plug and play. After setting up the first Wi-Fi point, the others auto-detect and auto-connect to the network. You don’t need to configure individual routers like you do when you use a Wi-Fi extender.

Actual usage of Google Wifi is easy as well. Where you’d normally have to delve into a router’s settings 10 Things You Must Do With a Brand New Router Whether you just bought your first ever router or upgraded your old one to a new one, there are several crucial first steps that you should take right away to set up properly. Read More to choose the best channel and band, each point on the Google Wifi network does this automatically. They are constantly scanning and switching channels and bands to give you the fastest, most interference-free connection.

Google Wifi Is Controlled by App

5 Home Network Issues Solved With Google Wifi google wifi app


To use Google Wifi, you need to have the mobile app installed on your iPhone or Android phone. As well as helping you to get set up and add other Wi-Fi points, the app gives you full control over your network:

  • Give bandwidth priority to specific devices to get the best speeds when you need them, such as when watching Netflix in 4K on your TV.
  • See what devices are connected to your network and how much bandwidth they’re using.
  • Set up a guest password for your friends.
  • Connect and control select smart home devices.
  • Control the internet usage of kids by pausing access on their devices.

Google Wifi Works With Smart Home Gear

Speaking of smart home integration, anyone on your Google Wifi network will be able to control your Philips Hue lights. Given time, a far greater range of internet of Things devices will be supported as Google Wifi becomes the preferred hub for your smart home.

5 Home Network Issues Solved With Google Wifi google wifi and ifttt

IFTTT also works with Google Wifi. This brings support to devices like Nest Thermostats and the Amazon Echo, along with countless other recipes Amazing Things You Can Do With Smart Appliances and IFTTT Each smart appliance comes with a set of instructions. However, thanks to IFTTT, one can streamline many of these processes so that they all become connected to one another. Read More that give you control over your network.

Google Wifi Even Looks Great

It may seem trivial, but the attractive design of Google Wifi serves as another benefit. Most routers are ugly boxes with flashing lights and antennas poking out in various directions — they’re just asking to be tucked away in a corner or hidden behind a plant pot, which can actually hinder your Wi-Fi speeds How to Fix a Slow or Unstable Wi-Fi Connection Why does your internet suck? Here's how to fix an unstable internet connection by changing the settings on your Wi-Fi router. Read More .

5 Home Network Issues Solved With Google Wifi google wifi

The clean, understated puck-style design of the Google Wifi units means they can happily be hidden in plain sight on shelves, desks, or even kitchen worktops. You won’t even know they’re there. It’ll free you up to position them wherever they perform best.

The Pros and Cons of Google Wifi

Naturally there are a few downsides you need to be aware of as well:

But in pretty much every other respect, it’s a big leap forward. Google Wifi hits the sweet spot between power and ease of use. It’s probably better than the router you’re currently using and is accessible enough for anyone who isn’t confident about setting up their tech.

Have you got Google Wifi, or are you planning to get it? Share your thoughts on the service in the comments.

Related topics: Google Wifi, Mesh Networks, Router, Wi-Fi.

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  1. Jim
    January 1, 2018 at 8:23 pm

    Been using GWF for about eight months now. It was simple to set up and is extremely fast. The three pack covers my home perfectly. I intend on getting two more to put in extreme corners to get a strong signal outside of my house as well.

    I have had zero issues with Wi-Fi since installing this. Great job again Google.

  2. Errol
    February 15, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    The quoted range "The single unit has a range of 1,500 feet and is fine for an apartment. The three-pack covers 4,500 feet " seems extreme. The 3 pack goes nearly a mile! Are you sure you don't mean square feet?

  3. Jdub
    February 14, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    Needing a new router currently I wish the price on this was cheaper, I'd deff buy if it was, or if they offered a 2 pack.

  4. Barry
    February 8, 2017 at 9:26 am

    When is going to be released in Australia

  5. Ray
    February 7, 2017 at 6:59 pm

    I recently made the switch to ubiquiti and love it. No more drops or resets. Everything just works as it should.