What is an access point?


An access point (AP) is a device that can send and receive data. The access point receives an Internet signal via an Ethernet cable connection to the router, which it converts into a separate Wi-Fi network. This makes comfortable surfing possible even in remote living areas – and additional end devices that would otherwise not be able to reach the router network are equipped with fast Wi-Fi.

When does an access point make sense?


A classic scenario: You can enjoy fast internet near the router – often situated in the hallway and living room area – but the router signal does not reach the first floor or the other end of the apartment. By setting up an access point here, you can supply other end devices with fast Wi-Fi. This is particularly useful for demanding applications such as home office, streaming and gaming.

Das Access-Point-Prinzip in Illustrationsform erklärt.

What is the difference between access point and repeater?


Repeaters and access points usually have the same goal: expanding the home network and strengthening the Wi-Fi signal in remote areas of the house. While an access point receives router data via an Ethernet cable, the repeater does so wirelessly. This is generally more convenient and less noticeable visually, but also more inefficient because the Wi-Fi signal strength decreases over long distances. An access point is therefore preferable for an optimal Wi-Fi performance.

The advantages and disadvantages of access points at a glance


Expanding your home network by means of an access point offers clear advantages:


  • Strong Wi-Fi for additional end devices and users – wherever the router signal is not sufficient
  • Optional LAN ports for potentially data-intensive applications such as home office, streaming and gaming
  • Full data usage thanks to the Ethernet connection to the router (in contrast to Wi-Fi extension using repeaters)
Ein Router liegt auf dem Schreibtisch während ein Mann steht neben dem Tisch mit einem Smartphone in der Hand.

If you choose an access point in lieu of a repeater, you have to accept some disadvantages – including a more complex setup, the hassle of laying an Ethernet cable, and less flexibility. But with the right access point solution these disadvantages can also be easily eliminated.

Which features should an access point have?

Ein WiFi 6 Icon in Grün.

Wi-Fi 6

The current Wi-Fi standard 802.11ax is particularly fast, secure, and efficient. If you want to get the most out of your home network, you should use an access point with Wi-Fi 6 support.

Ein Dual-Band-Icon in Grün.

Dual Band

An access point with dual band functionality can transmit in both the 2.4 and 5 GHz networks. The latter enables higher data rates over short distances, which benefits demanding applications.

Ein Multi-User-Icon in Grün.


MU-MIMO allows parallel data streams to be sent to multiple end devices and users connected at the same time in the home network. Thus, the Wi-Fi capacity of your access point is utilized much better.

Ein LAN-Kabel-Icon in Grün.

Ethernet outputs

If your access point offers one or, ideally, several Ethernet outputs, you can also connect your end devices via LAN in parallel to the Wi-Fi – a major advantage for data-intensive applications.

How to set up an access point

– Preliminary considerations and basic steps

Identify important devices and rooms that lack a strong Wi-Fi signal

A question that you should definitely ask yourself: In which rooms, which currently have no or only weak Wi-Fi, do you absolutely need a better signal? Where are most of your end devices with a dependency on strong Wi-Fi located?


For example, is it just about a room that is located on the same floor as the router is? Or a smart device that just barely gets enough Wi-Fi to function properly? Then the use of a flexible Wi-Fi repeater could already be of sufficient help.


On the other hand, are we talking about an entire home office or entertainment center with several end devices that depend on fast Wi-Fi and LAN connections? Possibly located on another floor? Then you should buy an access point and set it up as centrally as possible in the desired expansion area.

Smart placement of the access point and cables

If you want to supply several rooms and end devices with Wi-Fi, you should place your access point as close and as centrally as possible. This allows you to ensure an even signal distribution. Tip: If you use a PoE access point (Power over Ethernet), no external power supply is required, which makes the placement more flexible.


It gets a bit more complicated if you operate end devices in one or more rooms that benefit from a LAN connection. In our Ethernet guide, you can find out which applications and end devices fall under this category.


So, would you like to supply a Smart TV, a home office PC, a gaming console, or other data-hungry end devices with particularly constant, fast Internet signal? Then you need to lay LAN cables from the access point to every room where this is the case.

Use the right cable standard, cable channels & Co.

You should use an appropriate cable standard when wiring the router to the access point and when connecting any end devices. In the store you will find CAT 5, CAT 6, CAT 7 and CAT 8 network cables.


These differ in various specifications, including transmission speed and distance. A CAT 5 network cable is usually sufficient for home users. With data rates of up to 1 Gbps, this is more than sufficiently fast, and also offers a decent range of 100 meters.


Attaching LAN cables along baseboards and door frames makes it more discreet. Additional aids such as flat cables and cable channels can help to keep the unpleasant strings as invisible as possible.

Setup: SSID, Wi-Fi frequency bands and more

Once you have placed your access point and made the appropriate cabling, you can finally take care of the virtual setup. This varies depending on the device. The following aspects can and should play a role in this.


If your access point is dual-band capable – i.e., supports the 2.4 and 5 GHz frequency bands –you should activate this option in the Wi-Fi settings of your device. You should also configure your SSID (Service Set Identifier), i.e., set the name under which this second Wi-Fi network is displayed within your network environment.

With patience, money, and a little manual skill, you can place your access point ideally and thus expand your router Wi-Fi. You could also make it easier on yourself, though, by simply using the powerlines that are already laid in the walls of your house.

The simple alternative:

Access points on the socket - with Powerline

You can turn every single socket in your living area into its very own access point for strong Wi-Fi. The key to success: Magic Powerline. The efficient home network extension from devolo uses the powerline in your house to transport the Internet signal throughout the entire living space. Simply place an adapter near the router and another as an access point in the room of your choice – and you're done.


The huge advantage: You do not have to lay a long cable from your router all the way to the access point. Therefore, you are much more flexible in the design of your home network. Even outdoor access points are feasible if you place an adapter in your garden shed. In addition, each adapter offers two Gigabit Ethernet ports for particularly powerful LAN connections. In this way, each of your end devices gets the amount of data it needs.

Ein Access Point von devolo steckt an der Steckdose und versorgt die Umgebung mit schnellem WLAN.

With Mesh and Access Point Steering


It’s very easy to set up several Wi-Fi access points at the same time, if you want to. devolo Powerline adapters form a large mesh network that guarantees seamless Wi-Fi coverage throughout the living area.


Thanks to the integrated access point steering, each adapter ensures that all Wi-Fi end devices are always connected to the strongest Wi-Fi access point – fully automatically and without interruption.

Der devolo Magic 2 WiFi 6 mit Computer-Bild-Testsiegel.

Our recommendation: devolo Magic 2 WiFi 6


  • Internet everywhere – with Powerline technology
  • Wi-Fi 6 with up to 1,800 Mbps
  • Powerline speed up to 2,400 Mbps
  • For medium to large living areas (several floors)
  • Efficient, parallel use of data-hungry applications via LAN and Wi-Fi
  • 2 Gigabit LAN ports per adapter for an easy Ethernet connection

Whether streaming, cooking, gaming or even in the home office:

devolo provides strong Wi-Fi for the whole house.


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