Here in the UK, everytime you sign up to an ISP they will provide you with a router to connect at home. These are usually cheap netgear home routers (the one I'm using is a DGN-1000SP) with a basic GUI firmware. With 3 people in the flat, we usually have around 6 devices (3 PC's and 3 mobile devices) but sometimes up to 10 as more devices/guests come into play.
However, I've noticed that the network slows down massively when the number of devices get to 8 or so. Logging into my router's GUI I notice that the list of attached devices keep changing; sometimes there are as little as 3 devices connected and sometimes all 6 are shown.
Is this because the router cannot handle all the simultaneous requests (hardware fault) or because the internet connection is too slow? The connection is ADSL with 5Mbps down and 1Mbps up.
What are some ways I could fix this? Will establishing another access point with my spare router, wired to the original access point but broadcasting a different wireless channel and throwing traffic to this router help if the problem is to do with hardware?