What to look for in a cable modem.
Cable modems can connect to both a TV and internet service provider. Unlike other modem designs, which use a phone jack or a fiber optic connection, cable modems utilize coaxial cable ports to connect with the cable television input from your wall. You can then plug devices directly into the modem via ethernet cables, or you can hook up a Wi-Fi router for wireless internet.
If you know you want both a cable modem and Wi-Fi router, you can shop modem and router combos. But, you may also want to buy each device separately if you’re looking for any particular specifications. If you have a large home, hopefully you’ve looked into what mesh Wi-Fi is and if you need it. Both mesh Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi extenders keep the wireless signal strong throughout your home.
Another feature to consider when shopping for a modem is data encryption. A data encryption cable modem will provide increased security, which is important if you work from home or use smart home security systems that operate through your Wi-Fi.
Getting the most out of a cable modem.
Picking the best cable modem is just the beginning. During setup, you’ll want to protect your Wi-Fi cable modem by plugging it into a surge protector. Then, make the most of your modem by automating more of your home’s systems. For instance, you can save energy when heating and cooling by investing in a smart thermostat. Considering the advantages of smart lighting is also a good idea, letting you customize and control your lights from your smartphone.
You also don’t need to limit yourself to using the cable modem just for the internet. You can get a cable TV package if you want. And, even if you stick to streaming media subscriptions, you can enjoy higher streaming resolution on your television when you hook it up directly to a quality cable modem. An ethernet cable allows you to maintain higher data speeds—and better resolution—than a Wi-Fi connection does. If you go this route, be sure to check out the best tips for managing your cables.
If you’re ever curious about what kind of internet speed you’re getting at home, try using Best Buy’s internet speed test, which measures your internet’s megabits per second (Mbps). The higher the Mbps, the faster your internet speed is. And after you’ve chosen the best cable modem for you, think about scheduling a home network setup service to get everything running smoothly.