The difference between a modem and a router is that a modem connects to the internet, while a router connects devices to Wi-Fi.
It’s easy to get the two devices mixed up if your internet service provider (ISP) rents both to you as part of an internet package.
Do you need a router if you have a modem?
The router sits in between your Internet connection and your local network. But you can’t connect directly to the Internet with just a router. Instead, your router must be plugged into a device that can transmit your digital traffic over whatever type of Internet connection you have. And that device is a modem.
What does built in WiFi mean on a modem?
Built-in wifi simply means that the device you are looking at comes with wifi connectivity. You won’t have to buy any extra adapters to access a wifi network as the device already comes with a way of connecting to a wifi network. Nowadays, pretty much all laptops, smartphones, and tablets come with ‘built-in’ wifi.
Is it better to have a separate modem and router?
Getting a separate router and modem gives you a lot of flexibility because if you want to upgrade your home network to have faster speed or more features, you just need to replace the router. What’s more, most routers on the market have more settings and features than the router part of a combo device.