A router is a complex device in terms of options. It allows you to configure everything related to home networks and manage all the devices connected through different functions and one of them is QoS, an acronym for Quality of Service, which in Spanish means quality of service.

An option available in the routers that many operators distribute and which happens to be one of the great unknowns despite the usefulness it offers. And it is thanks to QoS that we can manage devices, services and their connections by establishing preferences, whether they are Wi-Fi or wired connections.

question of priorities

QoS is a very useful option when we have a large number of different devices and services connected to the same network. In some circumstances traffic can be congested and through QoS we can prioritize the traffic that certain devices (or services) need over the rest.

It is common for us to have different devices connected to the same router. Televisions, smartphones, tablets, computers, consoles… all generate data and bandwidth consumption that the router distributes in a balanced way. But what if a device or service is using high bandwidth? This is where QoS comes in.

Let’s imagine a house where a computer is downloading via P2P networks and another user is using online gaming. With the QoS tool, what is avoided is that one of them is harmed if the other consumes data. For example, you can prioritize games to optimize operation and fix lag issues or give preferences to downloads so they take less time to download.

Using this system, a device or service can be prioritized so that if it hogs too much bandwidth, it can continue to do so. If, on the other hand, it does not appear as a priority, the rest of the devices will be able to continue to access the Internet at normal speed. A function that can benefit equipment that has been connected by WiFi but also by cable.

Also, with this tool we can assign a maximum bandwidth to each device. Let’s say we have 600 megabytes and we want 550 of those 600 to be used by a utility. By configuring QoS correctly, we can do this.

With fiber connections (FTTH or HFC), the QoS service has lost its potential. It was a very practical option with copper connections and their more limited bandwidth. Now, with fiber connections with capacities of hundreds of megabytes, QoS service is not as popular.

In addition, some medium and high-end routers already use preconfigured algorithms that allow us to establish what traffic we want to prioritize. We can favor video streaming services (YouTube, Netflix, HBO Max…), online games, downloads…