Router vs. Hotspot – How do they compare

Both the Router and Hotspot devices are used in the transmission of internet signals, but their configurations are different because one is stationary and the other can move around the world while offering faster internet signals.

Since it is not a crime to own both a mobile hotspot and a router we will tear down into their features and functionalities, so that you see why you need both of them or either. Routers are normally stationed in homes or offices where they connect several devices to the internet, their coverage depends on the model and you also have the option of extending coverage through repeaters.

Hotspots, on the other hand, are mobile devices used by individuals who rarely spend time stationed in one place but need to stay connected. Hotspots are, therefore, portable and will ensure that you stay online when you are travelling or when you have to leave the office for a couple of hours, and just like routers, they can accommodate a few devices and offer strong internet signals.

What are the differences between a Router and a Hotspot?

Stationery( large)
Portable (small in size)
Device accommodation
250 devices
10 devices
LAN ports
2.4Ghz can reach up to 150feet indoors and 300ft outdoors
For b and g standards the range is set at 100 and 150ft

Router vs Hotspot- How do they compare?

Design and Build

Routers are large and will need decent storage space before they can function properly, they are also quite sensitive as regards placement. And you cannot place them close to the ground or too high up the ceiling, so the sweet spot is between the ceiling and the floor. If it has antennas they also have to be correctly positioned if you are to enjoy seamless surfing.

Routers can be connected to other networking devices, such as computers, thus come equipped with USB ports, and the Ethernet ports. Hotspots are very different from routers, and portable, they don’t have antennas and can be placed anywhere even inside a pocket and still transmit internet signals.

They don’t allow external connections, so the only thing that you will be connecting to your mobile hotspot is its charger. In terms of build and design therefore, a router is the best because it allows connectivity of other internet-enabled devices and the many antennas ensure that all devices connected enjoy flawless internet speeds.

Device accommodation

There hasn’t been developed a device that beats the router in connectivity, routers can accommodate over 200 devices, and provide them with seamless internet signals. Hotspots, on the other hand, are low performers because they only accommodate 10 devices or more and are still not able to supply them with reliable internet speeds.

In light of the above, the router remains the best as regards accommodation and faster transmission of internet speeds.


Well if you are using a mobile hotspot you can forget about scalability, routers are very capable of handling the growing number of devices that connect to the network and you can even increase its effectiveness by using the range extenders. So, all you have to do is place the range extenders in areas within your home that you know do not receive the relevant internet signals, such as upstairs, or in the backyard.

For the mobile hotspot, you can boost its signal, which will then be broadcasted in the areas that you need, but that does not mean that you can add more devices to your network. The router, therefore, is the better unit because it allows you to use more than one range extender.


Routers can be personalized more than you can personalize your mobile hotspot, for example you could prioritize devices when it comes to the transmission of the internet signals. You can allow and block content, you can even set the internet to go off on certain devices, and you can connect it to your phone and tweak it even when you are not on location.

Hotspots are customizable to a small extent and you can, therefore, create a separate guest network, but cannot tweak it from your phone. To which end the router remains the better option because of the various customizable features.

Router vs. Hotspot – A comparison Overview

Router Overview

Router vs. Hotspot

Routers normally connect to a modem from where they receive information and then transmit the information to the internet. The router is then configured to pick, build and communicate with your home Wi-Fi network via the built-in antennas. The above process ensures that all the devices in your home network get access to the internet.

The units are quite durable and will give you a long service of up to five years, and allow you to accommodate many devices to your network. They are, therefore, good for use in homes and in offices, because with the many connected devices it reduces the cost of the internet.


  • Are durable
  • Accommodates over 200 devices
  • Are scalable
  • The settings are customizable
  • Offer watertight security


  • Initial installation cost are high
  • Placement affects Wi-Fi signals

Hotspot Overview


The advantage of using mobile hotspots is that you get to stay connected while on the move. Mobile hotspots work by converting an LTE connection into Wi-Fi. Important to note is that with mobile hotspots you cannot make calls, but the good things with these devices is that you can use them in different countries but you must first check with your carrier so that you don’t end up paying exorbitant fees for the international plans.

So when getting a hotspot device, ensure to check on the battery capacity, network in terms of coverage, the data screen, and its ability to work with both the 2.4 and 5 GHz frequencies.


  • Are affordable
  • Can connect multiple devices
  • Offer reliable and high speeds internet
  • Are portable


  • Mobile hotspots provide slower internet access
  • Compared to routers the internet speeds are slow

Verdict: So, which is better, the Router of the Hotspot?

The router is the better unit because it is scalable, connects up to 250 devices on a single network, and can be personalized.


  1. How far should I place my router from my modem?

Your router should be placed about 5 to 6 feet apart

  1. Are mobile hotspots safe?

Mobile hotspots are not safe especially if you don’t use a password

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