(KBOI-TV) — Jim Willcox knows a lot about TVs and streaming media devices. He writes about them for Consumer Reports. But when it comes to getting a Wi-Fi signal throughout his house, he's at a loss.
"The signal is fine at the foot of the bed, but we don't get a signal at the headboard," Willcox said.
So Consumer Reports' Wi-Fi expert, Rich Fisco, brought the new Eero home Wi-Fi system to Jim's house to replace his old router.
"The Eero is a new way of getting good Wi-Fi all over your home. It creates what's known as a mesh network," Fisco said.
A mesh network is made up of multiple units that talk to each other wirelessly.
Consumer Reports tested the Eero the same way it tests wireless routers and found the Eero's signal is very impressive - even at the furthest test spot. Set up is easy, too. You plug the first unit into your modem. The rest is done with an app on your phone.
But the Eero can be pretty pricey depending on how many units you need - $200 for one, $500 for three.
A Wi-Fi extender can be cheaper, but it's not as effective.
"Extenders cut your signal in half. They only have one Wi-Fi radio that's used to receive and send signals," said Fisco.
The Eero signal is faster because it has two radios - one to send and another to receive.
As for Jim, he bought an Eero system and now can get wireless all over his house, even at the head of his bed.
If you have poor Wi-Fi in your house, it could be because your router is more than a few years old.