What is a router?

A router is a device that directs data traffic along specific routes. A router sends information, such as email and the content of web pages, between your computer and the network server. It also connects networks and acts as a filter at a ‘gateway’ between them, channelling information to the correct IP address, unique to each computer. A router is also the device that keeps single computers, or entire networks, connected to the internet.

A router can be connected to your computer by wires (or cables). However, more commonly these days, routers are ‘wireless’, allowing several wireless-enabled devices to access the internet at any one time and enabling users to use the devices in various locations within range of the router.