Third Party Routers v’s ISP Supplied Routers

Why spend money on a router when my internet provider will supply one for free?

When signing up to your internet service provider, you will usually get offered a free router and be told that is their “newest and best router” available.

“Newest and best router available” usually means is the newest and best spec model that they’re able to supply for free – not necessarily the best spec routers that can be used with your connection. The router that ISPs supply are often cheap models mass produced and rebadged with their name on it.

One of the main reasons for this is that when you ring them up for tech support and troubleshooting your internet connection, it is far easier for them to support one or two models based on their own firmware than it is hundreds of different ones.

Very rarely do these routers match the flexibility and performance of a good quality third party router.

Am I better off spending money on a third party router?

For the everyday user, ISP supplied routers will often cover the majority of requirements and scenarios around the home/office.

However, a third party router will offer many advantages and extra features such as:

  • You can use the same router if you ever change ISP
  • Better and faster signal strength
  • Ability to use custom firmware
  • Features such as QOS, dynamic DNS, guest networks
  • More control over your home network
  • Better network security
  • More privacy in that your ISP cannot see devices that are connected to your router like they can with their own supplied ones

However, there are a few cons to using your own third party router such:

  • You may get less help from your ISP when they try to troubleshoot issues with your connection
  • They can take a bit more knowledge to configure
  • Not all ISPs allow you to use third party routers with their connections.

If you feel that you will benefit from the features of using a third party router and would like advice  on the routers and the best set up for your needs, please contact us.