I just purchased a WiFi Range Extender, set it up with the same SSID as the WiFi Router, and thought I'd be able to walk around the house with my laptop, and it would automatically reconnect to the AP with stronger signal. What actually happened is the laptop sticks to the AP it originally connected to, and stays on it even when the signal from the other AP is much stronger, while the signal from the original AP is so weak that network speed deteriorates significantly.
After some googling around I found two things:
- This behaviour is by design. If I want to, I can tweak how aggressively my laptop looks for stronger AP's, in the network card settings. But such setting is not available in e.g. iPads or iPhones.
- There's something called "mesh" WiFi, where access points smartly route traffic between each other, provide auto-healing if one AP goes offline, etc. Also mesh WiFi apparently provides seamless device handoff from one AP to another as I walk around the house.
Now my question. If I did go ahead and spent money on a mesh network (like Deco or OneMesh advertised on the TP-Link website), would I achieve what I want? Somehow common sense is telling me that switching from one AP to another will still be decided by each device individually, rather than controlled by the access points.