Best Ways to Text From Your Computer

Texting from a computer can be convenient in
certain situations, and it’s really easy to do from both an iPhone and an
Android. However, there are some specific steps you have to take, and your
setup might not be compatible with computer-based texting.

Sending texts through a computer can be helpful if your phone is causing too many distractions for you but you still want to be reachable by text. Or maybe you can type a lot faster from your computer with a full-sized keyboard versus the small on-screen keyboard on your phone.

Another reason for texting from a PC or Mac is if you’re just too lazy to pick up your phone from across the room!

Regardless of your situation, we’ve got you
covered. Below are several ways to send and receive texts through your computer
on Android and iPhone. All methods are 100% free and most can be performed in
just a few minutes.

iMessage

The iMessage iOS texting service for iPhone
can be used from a Mac by logging in to Messages on your Mac with the same
Apple ID you’re logged in with on your iPhone. You can even take it a step
further and use iMessage on Android or a Windows computer by setting up special
software.

Let’s first look at how to text from a Mac:

Step 1: On your iPhone, go to Settings
> Messages and enable
iMessage by tapping the button next to it.

Step 2: Scroll down the page to Send
& Receive
and ensure that the correct phone number or email address is
selected. This is the method for which you will send and receive texts on your
Mac.

Step 3: Open Messages on your Mac and log in with the Apple ID and password
you’re logged in with on your iPhone.

Now you can view iMessage texts and send and
receive texts without using your iPhone. Messages will remain synced between
your Mac and iPhone as long as you remain logged in to both with the same Apple
ID.

With iMessage set up on your Mac, you can even
send and receive iPhone texts on Android via the AirMessage server software:

Step 1: Visit AirMessage and select AirMessage server for macOS on the bottom of the page.

Step 2: Install the program to your Mac and then open it and choose Edit Password to set your own password
for the iMessage server.

Select OK
to save and close that window.

Step 3: Install the AirMessage companion app on your Android.

Step 4: Enter the IP address to your Mac and the password you chose in Step
2.

Step 5: View your iPhone messages on your Android and send texts like you
would from an iPhone!

Tip: See the AirMessage install guide if you’re having troubles getting this to work.

Using iMessage on a Windows computer isn’t as
straightforward as the method for Macs. You can’t access iMessage from a
browser in Windows nor can you install official Apple software on Windows to
access your iOS texts.

Instead, the best way to go about sending iPhone texts through a Windows computer, without paying for the software, is to install a free remote access program.

Put AnyDesk or Chrome Remote Desktop (or something similar that supports both platforms) on your Mac and on your Windows PC, and then connect to your Mac to control the mouse and keyboard. This, of course, requires you to have a Mac set up with iMessage like described above.

Messages for Web

Messages is Google’s text messaging app for Android. Within it is a setting called “Messages for web” that you can enable to send texts through your phone via your computer. It works if both the phone and computer are on the same network.

Because Messages for web runs in a web
browser, it works on any computer, whether it be Windows, Mac, or Linux.

Note:
Although Wi-Fi is used between your phone and computer to send texts this way,
they’re still being sent from your phone’s messaging plan. In other words, if
you have a limited texting plan for your Android phone, this will count towards
your usage.

Step 1: Tap the vertical, three-dotted menu at the top right corner of the
app.

Step 2: Choose Messages for web.

Step 3: Tap QR code scanner.

Step 4: Visit https://messages.google.com/web on your computer and scan the QR code you see. This works in browsers like Chrome, Firefox, and Safari, but not Internet Explorer.

Optionally, you can choose Remember this computer before scanning
the code so that you don’t have to do this again the next time you want to send
texts from your computer.

Other Texting Apps
for Computers

iMessage and Messages are the default texting
apps in iOS and Android, but there are plenty of other messaging apps that can
be used from both a mobile device and a computer. If set up correctly, you have
lots of options for texting from a computer.

For example, if you like to use Facebook Messenger for texting on your Android or iPhone, you can access all the same messages and texting features from https://www.messenger.com, Facebook’s official website for Messenger.

All you need to log in with your Facebook account information. Texting like this works no matter where your phone is (i.e., it doesn’t need to be on the same Wi-Fi network).

WhatsApp is also a wildly popular texting app that can be accessed from a computer via https://web.whatsapp.com. It works like Android’s Messages app where you need to scan a QR code to log in to your account and ultimately send WhatsApp texts from the computer.

Just open the menu in WhatsApp and go to WhatsApp Web to open the camera you need to scan the code. Your phone must remain on the same network for this to work.

A few other examples where the texting feature of the messaging app can be used seamlessly between a phone and computer include Telegram Messenger, Slack, Skype, Textfree, and TextNow.

There are also ways to send free texts from a computer over email and web services. Those methods work differently than the ones we’ve described above because they’re not used to view your own messages on a computer but instead to send a free text to someone’s phone even if you don’t have a phone yourself.

Printer Ink Wars — EcoTank, Instant Ink, MegaTank, INKvestment Tank , Instant Ink

Everybody has heard the adage that the major inkjet printer manufacturers—Brother, Canon, Epson, and HP—make more from the ink that keeps their printers going than from the sale of the printers themselves. This is not just simply an axiom; it’s absolutely true.

Printer ink is not the only consumable that fuels the profit margin of a particular industry. Another often-touted example is razor blade replacement cartridges. (How many others can you think of?)

For the longest time, though, the only choice we had was (except for using third-party or refurbished ink cartridges, but that’s another story) to suck it up and pay the price—if, that is, we wanted to keep printing. Over the past few years, though, due primarily to pressure from consumers and technology journalists, printer makers now offer us choices, many choices.

It all started with HP’s Instant Ink subscription program, but now each printer maker offers some kind of “bulk-ink” product that provides at least some relief to the price of ink itself and, better yet, increased transparency into what it actually costs to keep your printer churning.

Each printer manufacturer has its own bulk-ink product, as
follows:

  • Brother
    = INKvestment Tank
  • Canon =
    MegaTank
  • Epson
    = EcoTank
  • HP =
    Instant Ink

Except for EcoTank and MegaTank, these products are quite
different in approach and how much they actually save you in terms of the
per-page cost of ink. Depending on how and what you print, each product has its
own distinct advantages and disadvantages.

Over an Ink Barrel

Without question, printer ink is one of the most expensive liquids, perhaps even one of the most costly substances, on the planet. You pay much more per ounce of printer ink than you do for, say, gasoline, most exclusive wines, the majority of fancy perfumes, and even, in some cases, gold.

Traditionally we quantify the cost of ink by its per-page cost, or the “cost per page” (CPP). For the many years that I’ve been writing about information technology, one of my biggest complaints (and that of many of my colleagues) has been the printer industry’s exorbitant CPPs—especially home-based and small-business office appliance CPPs, a.k.a. “running costs.”

Several factors, including the price of a printer, its
volume rating, and so on, influence a machine’s overall running costs, and the
difference between one machine’s running costs over another’s can be as much as
2-to-5 or even 6 cents per monochrome page and even greater than that—often
much greater—for color pages.

Doesn’t sound like much, you say? It’s just pennies! Look at
it from this perspective: for every 100,000 pages you print, a 1-cent
difference from one printer to another will cost you an additional $100.

Yeah, I know, you probably don’t print thousands of pages each month, or tens of thousands each year, for that matter. Okay then. Try this scenario: If you print and copy, say, 2,000 color pages per month, a 5-cent difference will cost you $100, or $1,200 per year.

Just think of how many consumer- or small-office-grade printers you could buy with those savings… As I’ve pointed out incessantly in hundreds of printer reviews, often, how much a printer costs to use is far more important than how much the machine itself costs to buy.

The good news is that all of today’s inkjet printers print
relatively well, thereby allowing you to worry more about features and running
costs. If you use your printer often, one or more of the following bulk-ink
products can save you money—sometimes big money. Which bulk-ink product is
right for you depends on how much and what you print.

Brother’s INKvestment
Tank

The newest of the bulk-ink technologies, Brother’s INKvestment Tank evolved from a previous product the company called simply INKvestment, which merely entailed traditional high-yield ink cartridges sold at prices low enough to deliver lower running costs.

In other words, the INKvestment AIO came with big ink takes, and when it came time to buy new ones, the cost per page was low—very low, for that matter, less than 1 cent for monochrome pages and about 4.75 cents per color pages.

The second iteration of INKvestment, INKvestment Tank, consists of a tank within a tank. The technical name for this latest version Brother dubbed INKvestment Tank Extended Print or, again, INKvestment Tank for short.

INKvestment Tank is a blend between standard ink cartridges and a set of onboard reservoirs, as shown in the image above. When you’re low on ink, you still buy and install cartridges as you normally would, but the cartridges offload into internal secondary tanks.

Between the external cartridges and internal reservoirs, the printer holds thousands of pages worth of ink. And, rather than displaying those annoyingly inaccurate ink volume indicators on the control panel or the printer’s built-in webpages, INKvestment Tank sensors keep track of how many pages you have printed and then estimate how many prints are remaining, as shown in the image below.

In addition, similar to HP’s Instant Ink program, INKvestment Tank watches ink levels, warns you when they’re low, and offers to order replacement cartridges directly from the machine’s onboard website or its control panel.

You can buy Brother’s Business Smart and Business Smart Plus
AIOs in either standard INKvestment Tank or INKvestment Tank XL iterations,
with the difference being that the latter comes with twice as much ink, or two
sets of ink cartridges.

According to Brother, each set of ink tanks hold up to—based on a formula of 300 prints per month, 60 percent black pages and 40 percent color pages—a year’s worth of ink. That’s well below both the maximum monthly duty cycle and/or the recommended monthly print volume for most of Brother’s printers.

If you use the machine as it’s designed for, chances are you’ll be buying ink long before the one- or two-year period the cartridges are rated for. The good news is, that the per page cost of monochrome pages is still (like the original INKvestment offering) under 1 cent and color pages still go for less than 5 cents each, making Brother’s INKvestment Tank printers an exceptional value.

Canon MegaTank

Of the big four inkjet printer makers, Canon’s commitment to bulk-ink printers and AIOs has been the most tepid. Like Epson’s original EcoTank products, where onboard reservoirs are filled from bottles, Canon’s MegaTank products are sensible, easy-to-use, and highly cost-effective.

Unfortunately, since its release a few years ago, though, we’ve seen only five MegaTank machines, and one of them, the Canon Pixma G4210 MegaTank Wireless All-in-One Printer, is an update to one of the original four models.

Each of the company’s MegaTank, or G-series, Pixmas, while
they all come with slightly different feature sets, runs at the same speed,
capacity, and volume ratings, and all four are intended for home and family
use, though the Pixma G4210 supports Ethernet and comes with an automatic
document feeder for sending multipage documents to the scanner. But it, like
the others, is too slow for anything but low-volume printing and copying,
making it less than ideal for the majority of business settings.

Though they typically sell for two to three times more than their non-MegaTank equivalents, MegaTank Pixmas come with thousands of pages worth of ink in the box. With the G4210, for example, Canon includes enough ink to equal what the company says will print up to 18,000 black pages and 7,000 color pages.

That’s enough black ink to print 500 monochrome pages per month for three years. In any case, whether you use all the ink that comes with the printer and must buy more, or not, your cost per page for both black pages and color pages is less than 1 cent each.

Not only is this a terrific value, but it just doesn’t get
much better than this. However, printing 500 pages a month on a MegaTank
machine, while it is most likely capable, would be pushing one of these little
Pixmas to its limit.

Epson’s EcoTank

Epson is, of course, the first company to come up with the onboard reservoirs refilled from bottles, and the company has made a major commitment to its EcoTank product line.

EcoTank all-in-one’s and standalone printers come in all shapes and sizes, from the company’s lower-end home and family Expression and Expression Premium Small-in-Ones to some rather robust office-oriented WorkForce Pro office appliances.

The company has also engineered a stable of higher-end hybrid EcoTank WorkForce Pro iterations that get their ink from large aluminum bags, instead of bottles. These are laser alternative machines designed to, well, replace laser printers in the workplace. Two of the company’s monochrome laser alternatives, the WorkForce Pro WF-M5799 and WF-M5299, support XXL bags that hold up to 40,000 pages.

Like MegaTank machines, EcoTank models typically cost two to
five times more than their non-EcoTank equivalents. Depending on capacity and
features, consumer- and small-business-grade desktops run from about $300 to $1,000,
and, also like their MegaTank counterparts, they come with thousands of pages
worth of ink in the box.

Based on formulas specific to the product in question, Epson claims that each EcoTank model comes with the equivalent of two years’ worth of ink. Typically, though, these formulas are based on relatively small per-month quotas.

However, as with MegaTank machines, whether you use all the ink that comes with the printer and must buy more, or not, the per-page running costs are under 1 cent for both monochrome and color pages. (The aluminum-bag hybrids’ CPPs run somewhat higher than that, though.)

Granted, it may be difficult to justify spending $400 or $500 for a printer that, without the EcoTank upgrade, would normally cost two to three times less—you certainly don’t get $400- or $500-equivalent features, volume, or capacity; you just get very (relatively, of course) inexpensive ink.

It’s important to note that EcoTank printers aren’t for everybody, but if you plan to print hundreds (or thousands) of pages each month, they will save you hundreds of (sometimes even thousands of) dollars over the life of their non-EcoTank siblings and competitors. The more you print, the more you’ll save. Period.

HP’s Instant Ink

HP started the bulk-ink trend several years ago, now. Its
Instant Ink subscription program offers ink at a by-the-page flat rate, with
the cost per page dependent on the monthly subscription level you commit to.
The various programs have changed over the years, but as I write this the
company offers, depending on the printer you own, six subscription levels.

  • Free
    Printing Plan
    : 15 pages per month for, well, free
  • Occasional
    Printing Plan
    : 50 pages per month for $2.99, with each additional 10 pages
    for $1
  • Moderate
    Printing Plan
    : 100 pages per month for $4.99, with each additional 15 pages
    for $1
  • Frequent
    Printing Plan
    : 300 pages per month for $9.99, with each additional 20 pages
    for $1
  • Business
    Plan 1:
    500 pages per month for $14.99, with each additional 20 pages for
    $1
  • Business
    Plan 2
    : 700 pages per month for $19.99, with each additional 20 pages for
    $1

The smallest plan here runs about 6 cents per page, and the largest plan will run you about 2.9 cents per page, with each additional print beyond the initial 700 at 5 cents each.

Compared to some of these other plans that may not seem like that good a bargain, but the thing to keep in mind with Instant Ink is that that flat rate is for any page, black or color, 5% coverage or 100% coverage.

An advantage of Instant Ink is that, unlike the others listed here, this is not a one-product-fits-all solution; it can grow or scale back based on how your print and copy needs evolve.

Where this product becomes a terrific bargain is, though, if you print a lot of photos, especially letter-size (8.5 by 11 inches) photos, and/or full-page graphics that could easily cost 10 or 20 times 2.9 cents. Like INKvestment Tank, with Instant Ink, the printer monitors your ink cartridges and orders new ones from HP when they start to run low.

A Penny Here, A Penny
There

As I said at the onslaught, which of these bulk-ink products will work for you depends mostly on what and how much you print. Then, too, there is the suitability of the specific printers and AIOs themselves.

Canon’s MegaTank products, for example, while good printers and great values within their somewhat narrow target market, aren’t suitable for any business application with any volume of printing and copying to speak of.

The bottom line is, if you don’t print but a few pages every
month, most of these products, except perhaps the smallest Instant Ink
subscriptions, are irrelevant, and in some cases, a waste of money. You
wouldn’t want to, for instance, shell out $500 for an EcoTank AIO with
thousands of pages worth of ink in the box, if all you print is 10 pages a
month.

At least now you have the various products laid out before
you—the shroud of mystery remote, if you will—allowing you to apply the
economics appropriate to your specific application.

How to Reset BIOS to Default Settings

There are times
when users exhaust all their options and resort to resetting their BIOS in
order to fix their computer.

The BIOS can be
corrupted because of an update gone bad or through malware. Learning how to
reset the BIOS is important in the event that you’d need to troubleshoot your
PC.

What
is BIOS?

BIOS stands for
Basic Input Output System. Every motherboard comes with BIOS. This software
makes it possible for users to troubleshoot the computer.

Usually, computer
technicians go into the BIOS setup to make adjustments to change the boot order
or configure the keyboard control. It also provides a list of installed
hardware like your hard drive, CPU, and RAM.

It doesn’t matter
what operating system you use. Whether you’re running Linux or Windows, you
will have access to the BIOS settings since practically every motherboard comes
with one.

What
is UEFI?

Newer computers
have replaced BIOS with UEFI or Unified Extensible Firmware Interface. UEFI is
faster and has improved security features compared to BIOS. Both terms,
however, are often used interchangeably by most users.

Laptop
BIOS vs Desktop BIOS: Is there a difference?

The process
should be the same whether you’re accessing the BIOS in your laptop or your
desktop. But do note that there are cases when users are locked out of their
BIOS completely. This would require that your computer’s housing be opened
which would void your warranty. In cases like this one, it would be best to
leave it to professional technicians.

It does not
matter if you’re running Windows 7, Windows 8, or WIndows 10. All modern
motherboards have built-in BIOS.

Accessing
BIOS

How you access
your BIOS would depend on your motherboard. There’s no real standard set so
manufacturers tend to assign different keys. But whatever brand you won,
getting into your BIOS settings start with a PC reboot.

While the
computer is loading, repeatedly hit the key that gets you into BIOS. The load
screen would sometimes leave hints as to what button to press. On most
machines, it would be the F2 key but
some laptops use DEL instead. Hit
the right button enough times and the computer will load your BIOS settings.

Windows 10 users
can also access BIOS using the Shift
+ Restart method. Go to Start > Power. While holding the Shift
key, press Restart. This will bring
up a blue window with several troubleshooting options.

From here, go to Troubleshoot > Advanced Options > UEFI
Firmware Settings
. Hit the Restart
button to continue.

The computer will
reboot but enter the BIOS at the end of it instead of bringing you to the login
screen.

Resetting
your BIOS settings

Once you’re in
BIOS, hit the F9 key to bring up the
Load Default Options prompt.
Clicking Yes will be enough to
restore the default settings.

You can also
reset BIOS in the Security tab. Different motherboards have varying menu
options but there will be one that would reset your BIOS.

Don’t forget to Save and Exit when you’re finished.

How to Change the Location of Spotify’s Local Storage in Windows

One of the most frustrating parts of having a
small SSD dedicated to your Windows operating system is the fact that some
software installers simply won’t give you the option of installing outside of
the primary drive.

There are even some applications that allow
you to store your installation data on a secondary drive but still place
temporary or cache files on the primary drive. For anyone interested in keeping
their primary drive nice and tidy, this can be a major issue.

Spotify is one of the many Windows
applications that you’ll eventually find taking up a whole mess of space. This
is due to the way Spotify locally caches your data so that you aren’t
constantly re-streaming music off of their servers. It serves as a way for
Spotify to save bandwidth and instantly deliver your music without needing to
buffer.

However, this comes at a price for those of us
trying to save precious disk space. Not everyone can afford to have several
gigabytes of local Spotify data on their primary drive, and the good news is
that there’s a way around it. Let’s talk about how you can move Spotify’s local
cache data to a new location within Windows.

How to Change the Location of
Spotify Data in Windows

To perform this task, we’re going to use
something called a symbolic link or directory junction. A directory junction
effectively creates a mirror of your data at one file path but actually stores
the data in another.

The first thing we’re going to need to do is
to find exactly where our Spotify’s data folder actually is. To do so, press
the Windows + R keys to bring up a
Run prompt. Here, type in “%localappdata
and press Enter.

This should bring up a Windows Explorer window
of the AppData\Local folder within
your Windows user profile location. In this list of files, find the Spotify folder and open it.

The Data
folder within is what contains all of your cached music data. You may want to
right-click on it and select Properties
to see how large this folder is. Is it so big that you’d like to move it off of
your current drive and onto another? Great! That’s what we’re going to do next.

The first step is to be sure that Spotify is not currently running on your machine. After making sure that it’s closed, you want to select the Data folder and press the Ctrl + C keys to copy it.

Next, bring up a second Windows Explorer window of the location where you want to move your Spotify data. At that location, press Ctrl + V to paste the folder.

Above, you can see that I’ve created a new
location to store my data at D:\craig\Spotify.
The pasted Data folder here contains
the contents of that same folder in C:\Users\craig\AppData\Local\Spotify.

Next, be sure that the two folders are
identical. Look inside both of them to see that you’ve fully copied all of the
files properly. Once complete, go back to the original Spotify folder location (in our first Windows Explorer window at AppData\Local), select the Data folder that we just copied, and
hit the Delete key to delete it.

Next, we’re going to create a directory
junction so that your new Data
folder points to where the old one once was. To do so, press the Windows + R keys to again bring up the
Run prompt. Type in “cmd”, but be
sure to press Ctrl + Shift + Enter
(instead of just Enter)—this runs
the prompt as Administrator.

This is where we’ll begin to create our
directory junction. You want to type in the following command: mklink /j <link> <target>,
where <link> is the path to
the original folder (that we’re recreating) and <target> is the path to the new folder (that we’ve pasted).

In my example above, I’d run this command: mklink /j
C:\Users\craig\AppData\Local\Spotify D:\craig\Spotify

It’s important to enclose the folder paths in
quotation marks if they contain a space.

You’ll see a success message after the
directory junction has been created. You should also see that the Data folder now appears again at our
original location, this time with the small “shortcut” icon at the bottom-left
corner.

That’s it! Now, when you play music in
Spotify, it will still cache that data in the original folder at your link
location. However, the directory junction will automatically move it to the new
location and “mirror” it at the original location.

For those of you who use Spotify on a daily
basis, years of regular use can cause this folder to swell to a massive size.
With this simple directory junction trick, you can store all of that data in
any folder on any drive.

Best of all is that this same procedure can be useful in many other useful scenarios—check out how we use a symbolic link to sync folders to Dropbox and OneDrive!

What is WiFi 6 and Is It Worth Waiting For?

The new Samsung S10 was just released and there was something in the specifications that you may have missed. It’s WiFi 6 ready! What is WiFi 6, you ask? Did you even know that there were different types of WiFi?

If you did know there were different types of WiFi, you probably knew them as 802.11a, 802.11b,  802.11n, or 802.11ac. If you’re counting, that’s 5 different versions.  

The WiFi Alliance, an organization of companies and people that help develop WiFi standards, has decided to make telling versions apart easier for you. 802.11n is now known as WiFi 4, 802.11ac is now WiFi 5 and the next hot thing is WiFi 6. But if you want to use its full name, it’s IEEE 802.11ax.

So, What’s Different About WiFi 6?

Like you’d expect with a new version of any tech, WiFi 6 is
faster. It supports a data rate of up to 9.6 Gbps. Compare that to your WiFi 5
and it’s almost three times as fast.

WiFi6 also supports connecting more devices at once. This might not have been an issue for you at home. But, when you’re out in public almost anywhere, there’s free WiFi to be had.

Ever notice how if it was a crowded coffee shop, the data crawled? That will be improved by two technologies WiFi 6 will use: orthogonal frequency division multiple access (OFDMA) and multi-user multiple input, multiple output (MU-MIMO).

Faster, For More People

OFDMA allows for more people to connect on any single
channel of the router. This is a more efficient way to increase the number of
people who connect, while also reducing latency (slowness) and maintain a high
rate of data transfer.

MU-MIMO also increases data throughput and the number of clients connecting at once. It does this slightly differently by allowing more data to be transferred at once.

A simple analogy would be going from a store with only one cash register and no barcode scanners to a store with a bunch of new cashier lanes with barcode scanners. More devices can be served with the same quality, faster.

That’s important because the average household can expect to have about 50 Internet-connected devices before long, according to a report from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)

Stronger Signal, Longer Lasting Batteries

WiFi 6 will also have an improved signal power within its
range, allowing for faster data rates and a more stable signal.

Target Wake Time (TWT) is another technology that WiFi 6
will use. Qualcomm, the maker of many WiFi chips, says it will help, “…phones
to use up to 33% lower power…” when using WiFi. The basic concept is that your
phones WiFi will only wake up when it needs to transfer data.

How Good is WiFi 6 Really?

Let’s say you’re watching Netflix in the living room, your partner is watching Hulu in the bedroom, your teenage daughter is streaming Spotify in her room while video chatting with her friends, and your younger son is 6 hours into an epic Fortnite binge.

Would you cringe as you saw your Netflix stutter and drop quality? Not with WiFi 6. All that could go on and you wouldn’t notice with a WiFi 6 network in your home.

That’s what WiFi 6 promises.

Will My Older Phone Work with WiFi 6?

The short answer is yes. You won’t get all the benefits of
WiFi 6 by connecting your older device to a WiFi 6 router, but you will be able
to connect and use it. It may mean that you’re able to connect to WiFi easier
in a crowded coffee shop and have a better transfer rate if they have a WiFi 6
access point.

So, yes, your phone, tablet, computer, and IoT devices will
work with a WiFi 6 router.

Will My WiFi 6 Phone Work with My Old Router?

Again, the short answer is yes. And just like we covered in
the last section, you won’t have the benefits you would by connecting to a WiFi
6 router. The older router still has its limits and your phone cannot exceed
them. Just because you have a Ferrari doesn’t mean you can ignore the speed
limits.

Do I Need a WiFi 6 Router?

This is the age-old quandary of need versus want. If you
want to have all the benefits of the new WiFi 6 standard, you will need a WiFi
6 router to go with your WiFi 6 phones, tablets, computers, and smart devices.
If you’re content with your current router, then no, you don’t need to get a
new router.  

When you do get a new router, keep in mind our advice on boosting your WiFi signal and improving its performance. You want to squeeze every drop of performance out of it.

What Devices Will have WiFi 6?

The Samsung Galaxy S10 is the biggest phone name to hit the market with WiFi 6 so far. Expect to see Apple, Google, and everyone else follow the trend with their next product releases. You’ll also start to find WiFi 6 built in to cars.

Qualcomm has made a WiFi 6 chip that will, “support Gigabit in-car hotspot and to deliver efficient Wi-Fi connectivity throughout the vehicle, supporting ultra-high definition (ultra-HD) video streaming on multiple displays, screen mirroring from compatible devices and wireless back-up cameras, as well as Bluetooth 5.1 support”.

Also, most WiFi router manufacturers already have WiFi 6
routers on the market. Prices start at around $130 and go up from there.

What Else Should I Know About WiFi 6?

Depending on the maker of the router or device, expect to see enhanced Bluetooth 5.1 capabilities, synergies with the new 5G cellular data standard. Expect 5G capabilities on the best Android phones this year. There will also be integration of WPA-3 security for better data protection. Basically, everything gets better.

Image credits:

Linksys Mu-Mimo Explanation:https://www.amazon.co.uk/b?ie=UTF8&node=9836110031

Galaxy S10 Screenshot –https://www.samsung.com/us/mobile/galaxy-s10/performance/

Qualcomm Automotive Use Case –https://www.qualcomm.com/news/media-center/images

Asus Router –https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51L44eF4GYL._SL1000_.jpg

Wifi 4-5-6 Comparison, WiFi 4-5-6 Naming Convention – wifi.org