Google Nest Wifi and Google Wifi are mesh network Wi-Fi systems. A mesh network is a group of devices that act as a single Wi-Fi network; so there are multiple sources of Wi-Fi around your house, instead of just a single router. These additional Wi-Fi sources are called points.
Since Google Nest Wifi and Google Wifi are broadcasted from each point around your house (and not just a single router), they can provide better coverage over a wider space. If you have a large house, you can add more points for additional Wi-Fi coverage.
All points are connected to each other wirelessly. As long as they are within range, they can communicate with one another wirelessly without the need for a router or switch. This allows for fast, efficient routing of data.
But if you do want to use wired connections, you can. Make sure that your points are wired into a switch and that the switch is wired to the LAN port of the router or primary point (the one connected to your modem). The wired points will recognize the wired connection and route traffic over Ethernet. Learn more about hardwiring Google Nest Wifi and Google Wifi routers and points.
How is this different from a traditional Wi-Fi network?
In a traditional Wi-Fi network, your phone or laptop are connected to a single router, and all communication passes through that single router.
The farther you are from the router, the weaker the signal. With Google Nest Wifi and Google Wifi mesh systems, you'll have multiple Wifi points in your house, so you’re never far from one.
What are the benefits of a mesh network?
Here are some benefits of a mesh network:
- Flexible coverage: Additional points can be added to get better coverage in hard-to-cover areas like hallways and near walls for outdoor coverage.
- Self healing: In a mesh network, if one point goes down, communication is simply rerouted through another point. Note: If your router or primary point goes offline (the one connected to your modem), so will your entire network. You’ll also get a notification in the app after a few minutes.
- Direct path: Since all of the points are connected to each other, data can take several paths toward its destination -- and it’ll always choose the best route from Point A to Point B.