A new online survey of 1,977 internet users in the United Kingdom, which was conducted by broadband comparison and telecoms news site ISPreview.co.uk, has found that 63% of respondents got their home router from an ISP (e.g. bundled). Meanwhile 65% rated the quality of that device and its Wi-Fi (wireless network) performance as either “Good” or “Very Good” (24% said “Average” and 11% “Poor”).
Despite this some 37% said they still preferred to purchase a third-party router (e.g. brought from a shop rather than bundled for free by an ISP), which can deliver better performance and offer extra features, as well as fewer general restrictions.
Respondents were also asked whether they made use of their router’s Ethernet (LAN) ports, with 51% saying they plugged into all 4 ports. In the past some ISPs (e.g. Sky’s Q Hub) have supplied routers with fewer ports and that isn’t enough for everybody. Using a wired connection, where convenient, also helps to get around the problem of poor WiFi.
Question – How many of the router’s Ethernet (LAN) ports do you use on the back?
51% – 4 Ports+
17% – 2 Ports
16% – 1 Port
11% – 3 Ports
5% – None
Mark Jackson, ISPreview.co.uk’s Editor-in-Chief, said: “A decade ago the routers that ISPs use to supply with their broadband packages were generally cheaper, bottom of the range style rubbish, which would often struggle to deal with multiple devices and offered weak wireless (WiFi) connectivity.”
“Today modern ISPs have long since cottoned on to the fact that routers can be another useful way to differentiate themselves from rivals and as such the standard of hardware has improved. Nevertheless if you really want the best kit and latest features then third-party devices are still the best option, provided your ISP supports their use (always check first) and you’re comfortable with setting one up yourself,” concluded Jackson.