Considering the increasing number of devices that require WiFi connection these days, it’s only natural to want a router that will bring them all together. However, choosing one that fits your needs can confuse all the technical specifications and ads that try to sell you the most expensive model.
Truth be told, most users don’t need the latest design that comes with mind-blowing specifications. In support of this, we decided to find the best router under $100 to support a busy household (from an Internet traffic point of view).
So, if you’re interested in learning more about the type of wireless router you need, make sure to read the reviews below.
|WiFi Router||Data Transfer Rate||Connectivity Technology||Frequency Bands Supported||Total Ethernet Ports||Amazon Rating|
|TP-Link Archer A7||1750 Mb per second||WiFi||Dual-Band||4||4.5 out of 5 stars50,866 global ratings|
|NETGEAR Nighthawk||1300 Mb per second||WiFi||Dual-Band||5||4.3 out of 5 stars35,919 global ratings|
|TP-Link Archer A6||1200 Mb per second||WiFi, Ethernet||Dual-Band||5||4.5 out of 5 stars15,437 global ratings|
|ASUS RT-ACRH18||1750 Mb per second||WiFi||Dual-Band||4||4.5 out of 5 stars4,916 global ratings|
|NETGEAR R6230||900 Mb per second||WiFi||Dual-Band||5||4.4 out of 5 stars5,939 global ratings|
|Google Wifi||1200 Mb per second||WiFi||Dual-Band||2 Ethernet ports||4.7 out of 5 stars5,488 global ratings|
|ASUS RT-AC66U B1||1750 Mb per second||USB||Dual-Band||5 Ethernet ports and 5 LAN ports||4.5 out of 5 stars2,918 global ratings|
|Tenda AC1200||1200 Mb per second||Wireless||Dual-Band||4||4.1 out of 5 stars10,668 global ratings|
|ASUS RT-ACRH12||867.0 Mb per second||WiFi||Dual-Band||4||4.5 out of 5 stars2,138 global ratings|
9 Best Router Under 100 Dollars
1. TP-Link AC1750 Smart WiFi Router (Archer A7)
If you are looking for the best internet router for super-fast data transfer supporting smooth gaming and streaming, choose TP-Link Archer A7.
TP-Link A7 transfers data at 1750 Megabits per second, supports 25+ devices, and offers up to 2,500 square feet connection range. TP-Link Archer A7 pairs well with the TP-Link OneMesh WiFi extender, and you can easily use Alexa to manage TP-Link A7.
TP-Link AC1750 Smart WiFi Router is the best router under 100 for small-scale gaming arenas and households with more than 4-6 devices connected to the WiFi.
- Connect up to 50+ devices
- Exceptional WiFi Coverage
- Stable WiFi Performance
- Advanced WPA/WPA2 wireless encryption
- Smooth gaming and 4K streaming experience
- No USB 3.0 ports
2. NETGEAR R6700 Nighthawk Smart WiFi Router
The greatest strength of Netgear Nighthawk, besides its performance, is the added layer of security provided by Netgear Armor for connected devices against online threats.
Netgear Armor offers superior protection against malware, viruses, and data theft on all computers, smartphones, and other devices connected to the router. The model has the basic WPA2 wireless security protocols.
Netgear Nighthawk has a decent coverage area of up to 1500 square feet and can support up to 25 devices. The Nighthawk App makes setup and settings management easy and convenient. With up to 1750Mbps wireless speed, NETGEAR R6700 is excellent for HD streaming and online gaming. It is Ideal for Professionals working at home.
- Up to 25 devices connections simultaneously
- Supports WPA2 wireless security protocols
- Range-boosting Beamforming+ antennas
- Easy 5-Minute Setup with Nighthawk App
- It doesn’t support MU-MIMO technology.
3. TP-Link AC1200 Gigabit WiFi Router (Archer A6)
In terms of bang for your buck, the TP-Link Archer A6 router is hard to top. This dual-band router upgrades to 1200 Mbps high-speed internet, reducing buffering and lag when streaming movies or playing games. With MU-MIMO technology (5GHz band), you can simultaneously connect several devices and enjoy high-speed internet.
Set up this device in minutes with the Tether app, which allows for parental controls and remote network management. This router comes with a 2-year warranty and 24/7 technical support.
- MU-MIMO technology
- Supports guest WiFi and parental control
- Eliminate Dead Zones
- Gigabit Ethernet port ensures reliable high-speed connections
- Tether App allows easy setup and management
- No 3.0 USB ports
4. ASUS AC1750 WiFi Router (RT-ACRH18)
ASUS AC1750 is the best wireless router under 100 for homes and offices because its internet speed at 2.4 GHz reaches 450 Mbps, and at 5GHz, it reaches an impressive 1300 Mbps.
You do not face any dead spot or low signal issues due to its revolutionary technology connects multiple MU-MIMO-compatible clients at the maximum speed of each device simultaneously. To add to that, you also get optimized coverage with AiRadar Beamforming, which ensures stable connections by directing WiFi signals towards connected devices.
Whether you talk about WiFi connection range, speed, or price, ASUS RT-ACRH18 AC1750 gives tough competition to other routers in the same price range.
- AiRadar Beamforming ensures optimized coverage
- ASUS Router App allows easy network setup and control
- Handles heavy usage and traffic with ease
- Parental controls available
- Powered by 5G WiFi
- Limited information available online
5. NETGEAR R6230 WiFi Router
If you struggle with WiFi signals, skip the WiFi extender and invest in NETGEAR R6230 WiFi Router.
Under $80, NETGEAR AC1200 offers an impressively fast speed at 1200 Megabits per second (500Mbps for the 5GHz and 300 for the 2.4GHz networks). It also can prioritize services that need a lot more bandwidth, making it a perfect option for a smooth streaming and gaming experience.
The Nighthawk app has a highly user-friendly control interface that allows users to control the router with their smartphone. For its incredible performance, smart features, and highly affordable price, NETGEAR R6230 WiFi Router is considered the best AC router under $100.
- Loaded with advanced technology
- High-powered antennas and Dual-Band streaming
- Connect up to 20 devices simultaneously
- High-level WPA/WPA2 wireless security
- Easy network setup and management
- No USB 3.0 ports
- Firmware updates often have flaws
6. Google WiFi – AC1200 – Mesh WiFi System – WiFi Router
Google WiFi is trusted for its performance and famous for its stylish design. This single-unit, whole-home mesh WiFi system offers an impressive WiFi speed of up to 1200Mbps and signal range up to 1500 sq. ft. To increase the connection range, you can expand the network by quickly adding up to two more units to the network, depending on your requirement.
Google WiFi does not support multiple wired connections or has USB ports. Gamers must keep in mind that Google WiFi has only one port for connecting ethernet, so they would have to add ethernet ports if required.
Google WiFi It is easy to use, compact and lightweight, and offers reliable and fast performance. So it is a better option for homes rather than offices.
- Stable and reliable internet connection
- Simple setup in a few steps
- Easy to control home WiFi system
- Compatible with all Nest WiFi and Google WiFi devices
- Made from 45% recycled material
- Coverage up to 4500 square feet.
- Additional Ethernet port required
7. ASUS AC1750 WiFi Router (RT-AC66U B1)
If you want a reliable and efficient WiFi router for a household with many people or a small-scale office, ASUS RT-AC66U B1 is the best option.
The ASUS AC1750 is the best for large families because it supports 3,000 square feet and over 30 devices. The router is also easy to install, manage, and check-in remotely with the ASUS Router App. You don’t have to be tech-savvy to use and manage the ASUS RT-AC66U B1. You also have the option to manage parental controls with Alexa.
ASUS RT-AC66U B1 features AiProtection Powered by Trend Micro that provides multi-stage protection from vulnerability detection, which allows you to protect your sensitive data from any security breaches. You also get AiCloud 2.0 support for easy and fast network file sharing, while AiCloud supports remote file access. All in all, the ASUS AC1750 offers excellent value for money, and we highly recommend it.
- Multi-stage protection with AiProtection Powered by Trend Micro
- Excellent coverage and signal range
- ASUS Router App allows easy and fast setup
- ASUS Tech support is not that great
8. Tenda AC1200 Dual Band WiFi Router
If you want the best WiFi router under 50 dollars, Tenda AC1200 Dual Band WiFi Router is a reliable option. With Tenda’s enhanced 1200 Mbps high-speed WiFi technology, you get combined speeds of 300mbps at 2.4GHz and +867Mbps at 5GHz with a connection range up to 2000 Sq. ft.
Tenda AC1200 is ideal for homes as you can connect up to 20 devices at a time, including Google Assistant, Alexa, and various streaming devices. It is also the best router for bandwidth-intensive tasks like lag-free HD streaming and online gaming. The Beamforming + technology ensures that all of the connected devices get a stable and high-speed internet connection.
- Lag-free HD streaming and online gaming
- Four powerful 5dBi antennas
- Advanced MU-MIMO technology
- Concentrated WiFi signal and reduced blind spots
- Reliable and fast WiFi performance
- Unreliable security
9. ASUS AC1200 WiFi Gaming Router (RT-ACRH12)
The ASUS RT-ACRH12 lets you make the most of your high-speed internet connection. The dual-band gigabit router offers combined speeds of 400mbps on the 5Ghz band and 867Mbps on the 2.4Ghz – up to 1300Mbps with up to 3,000 Sq. Ft. of WiFi Coverage. With USB 2 and ASUS AiDisk, network file sharing is reliable and fast both locally and remotely.
The AC1200 WiFi Router has been designed specifically for modern homes with multiple data-hungry smart devices. Dual bands and two external antennas provide a stable, reliable signal without dead spots.
With ASUS Router APP, you can efficiently set up and manage the router. All-in-all good for people who are looking for a high-speed and trustable router under $50.
- Smooth gaming and 4K streaming experience
- Advanced WPA/WPA2 wireless encryption
- Affordable price
- Works with Alexa
- High-speed internet performance
- It does not feature Beamforming
The Buyer’s Guide
A $100 budget for a new WiFi Router will put you in the mid-range buyer category, which is not bad. Although the medium-range models don’t have high-end functions, they offer an outstanding balance between functionality and practicality. However, you must select the right router for your needs after considering a few key factors.
Thankfully, all our picks perform well in all the different factors. Below we share some of the key considerations for buying Wifi-Routers under $100:
When looking at the specifications of a WiFi Router, it is essential to remember that the model’s speed doesn’t equal the actual throughput because when working in daily life, in most situations, routers can achieve only a part of the rated speed.
So consider the number of devices connected to the WiFi router at a time. If it’s just a couple of devices, it is ok to go for a model with a 900 rating; otherwise, go for AC1500 or above if you want to connect more than two devices simultaneously.
Furthermore, consider what you’ll be using your WiFi; if you are streaming 1080p video on a phone or tablet, then a router with 300 Mbps speed will be enough. However, if more than one device will be connected, you will need at least a rating of 1200 Mbps speed.
If you are lucky enough to have super-fast gigabit-speed internet, then the top-of-the-range AC5400 ratings will be ideal for you.
WiFi routers come in two bands – 2.4GHz and 5GHz, and it is essential to know the differences and what they do. 2.4GHz provides a longer range but lower speeds, and the 5GHz offers short-range but higher speeds. Both bands have their functionality.
Modern WiFi routers are dual-band for improved usability; the two bands support different speeds and allow users to have the flexibility to move around the room and the house without facing lag or serious performance issues. However, to enjoy the fastest speed, you’ll have to be near the router.
3. LAN Port Type
As 4K resolution videos and high-speed internet connections thanks to optical fiber become more common, routers with ethernet ports that support up to 100 Mbps won’t be able to keep up. WiFi routers with gigabit ports that support 1000 Mbps will be the norm in the near future. Gigabit ports provide better speed and performance that make downloading large files quicker; in fact, Ethernet port routers would take ten times longer.
4. WiFi Standards and Security
The WiFi standards also depend on the number of devices and how much data they use. The 802.11N standard with a 900 Mbps rating will be sufficient for 40 Mbps downloads. However, for multiple high data consumption devices, you’ll need AC1200 standard routers.
In terms of security, the most common WPA2 security will be enough for home networks. For business use with a high risk of hacking, WPA2 can also be sufficient. The built-in NAT firewall works well for home security needs.
MU-MIMO is an abbreviation of Multi-User, Multiple Inputs, Multiple Outputs, also called the AC Wave 2, enables a single router to interact with multiple smart devices simultaneously and is an essential feature in all modern WiFi routers. Older routers that did not have this feature needed a long time to converse with complex connections because they placed devices and their requests in a queue.
6. Number of ports
In the $100 range, it is essential to have USB 3.0 AND USB 2.0 ports and the standard 4 LAN ports. We recommend that you avoid routers that don’t have at least one USB 3.0 port.
Most routers under the $100 range will come with a five dBi antenna, which covers around the 100 feet range that is sufficient for most homes. Try to select a model with a detachable antenna, which allows you to upgrade to a 10dBi to extend the signal range to cover a larger area without buying a new router.
FAQs about Routers
Q: What is an internet router?
Ans: Routers are networking devices that are programmed to send data packets between computer networks. All data transmitted via the internet, including emails, web pages, and more, is in the data packets form.
Q: Should I buy or rent an internet router?
Ans: Internet service providers usually offer the option to rent a router with an internet package. Although buying your modem and router will increase your initial costs; however, it will decrease the monthly internet bill. Purchasing a separate modem and router has several added benefits.
However, if you are not tech-savvy and want to keep it simple, buying a combo from your internet supplier is a better idea.
Q: When do I need to upgrade my router?
Ans: Tech companies keep rolling upgraded and improved devices in the market. It is essential to know what your current router can do and not do by checking the website and specifications of your existing router. If it is still compatible with your devices and provides the features you require, there is no need to upgrade your router.
However, it is a good idea to upgrade your router every three years, regardless of how well it is performing. Before buying a new router, make sure that you thoroughly learn about the specs of your options and select a device that offers better specs and features than your previous one.
Q: Should I change my router to increase my internet speed and improve signal strength?
Ans: Changing the WiFi routers does help in improving the internet speed, but not in every case. Even the latest router will fail to improve the signal strength if it is not placed correctly. Likewise, if there is too much distance between the router and the devices, you will never be able to increase your internet speed.
Investing in a WiFi extender is a smarter idea if you want to extend your WiFi’s signal strength and increase internet speed. Also, check and verify your original internet’s speed and signal strength before investing in a router or WiFi extender.
We have shared our nine best routers under 100 that will help you improve your internet experience and save money in the long run. All of these top 9 routers are high-quality and cost-effective, so that you can choose any of them without any worries. Ensure that you are fully aware of your home and office internet requirements and issues before making your final buying decision. Also, take professional advice on where you place your WiFi router for the best signal strength and internet speed.
Have you tried any WiFi routers under 100? Please share your favorite WiFi router and why you think it is the best with us in the comments.