How To Give Priority To Devices On Your Wi-Fi Network

Guide to Effectively Prioritize Devices on Your Wi-Fi Network

WI-FI NETWORK – Here’s a tech pro tip guide to effectively prioritize devices on your Wi-Fi network.

We’ve all experienced frustration with YouTube buffering and often blamed our internet speed. However, the real culprit is frequently the multitude of devices competing for bandwidth on your Wi-Fi.

Whether it’s your spouse streaming three sports games simultaneously, your kid downloading a new video game, or your roommate binge-watching their favorite show, these activities can contribute to slow internet speeds.

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The good news is that there’s a simple solution that doesn’t require disconnecting any devices. Enter “Quality of Service” (QoS), the unsung hero that can help you navigate the traffic on your wireless network.

Understanding Quality of Service

So, what exactly is Quality of Service (QoS) and how does it operate? In essence, it’s a router technology that manages the bandwidth allocated to internet-enabled devices on a network. When applied to your home Wi-Fi, specific devices can be designated as “more important” than others.

For example, if you want to prioritize your smart TV for all your favorite shows, it will be given preference in terms of internet speed over a Windows update. This doesn’t mean the Windows update will come to a halt; it will still proceed, but at a slower pace, along with other devices that didn’t receive VIP treatment. Goodbye to buffering issues!

Setting up Quality of Service

The more advanced your router, the greater the range of QoS options available. I’ve compiled information on some reputable brands to illustrate how they function.

The Quality of Service (QoS) feature does not possess the magical ability to instantly boost the speed of all devices on your network. Its effectiveness is still contingent on the initial speed provided by your internet package. Think of QoS as an additional layer of optimization. If you aim to further improve your Wi-Fi connection, contemplate implementing these supplementary measures.

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QoS on Google Nest routers

1. Launch the Google Home app on your smartphone.

To set device priority:

   a. Tap on Favorites, then Wi-Fi.

   b. Choose Devices and select the device you want to prioritize.

   c. Specify the duration for device prioritization.

   d. Save your preferences.

To set activity priority:

   a. Tap Wi-Fi, then the Settings icon.

   b. Select Preferred activities.

   c. Pick the type of activity to prioritize (e.g., video conferencing).

QoS on TP-Link routers

1. Connect to your router using a computer.

2. Open a web browser and log in at

To set device priority:

   a. Click Advanced, then QoS.

   b. Choose Device Priority.

   c. Set the Total Bandwidth for your internet.

   d. Save your settings and toggle the Priority Switch for the desired device.

To set application priority:

   a. Click Advanced, then QoS.

   b. Select Application Priority.

   c. Set the Total Bandwidth for your internet.

   d. Save your settings and choose from the category menu (e.g., gaming, streaming).

QoS on NETGEAR routers

  • Connect your computer to the router through a computer connection.
  • Access using a web browser.
  • Navigate to the Advanced section.
  • Click on Setup, then go to QoS setup, and proceed to Setup QoS rule.
  • Choose Add Priority Rule.
  • Select a Priority Category from the options available (Applications, Online Gaming, Ethernet LAN Port, or Mac address).
  • Customize your Priority Category by specifying the application, game, or internet port you want to prioritize.
  • Set the priority level to Highest, High, Normal, or Low under the Priority section.
  • Apply the changes by clicking on the Apply button.

QoS on Linksys routers

1. Connect to your router using a computer.

2. Log in at

3. Go to Applications & Gaming, then QoS in the sub-tab.

4. Enable QoS in the Internet Access Policy Priority field.

5. Set Upstream Bandwidth to Manual and input a bandwidth value.

6. Choose the appropriate Category from the drop-down menu.

7. Name the device for prioritization and input its MAC Address.

8. Set the priority level.

9. Apply your changes.

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