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Can I use a wired and wireless device on the same network?

Answer: Yes. If you have a wireless router that also has Ethernet ports, you can use wired and wireless devices together. A LAN that includes both wired and wireless devices is sometimes called a "mixed network."

Below is a network diagram with wireless and wired devices connected to the same router.

Network with Wired and Wireless Devices

Examples of devices you can connect to the same local area network (LAN) include:

  • Desktop computer
  • Laptop
  • Printer
  • Tablet
  • Smartphone
  • Smartwatch
  • Smart TV
  • Gaming console

The main thing you need is a router that supports wireless (Wi-Fi) and wired (Ethernet) connections. It doesn't matter to the router if a device is connected via Wi-Fi or Ethernet. The router simply assigns each device an internal IP address and they become part of the same network.

For example, if you connect a desktop computer to your network via an Ethernet cable and your laptop via Wi-Fi, you can share files back and forth since they are connected to the same network. Similarly, you can use a smartphone to cast video to your smart TV even if the TV is connected to your network via a wired connection.

The only caveat is that the router may have a security setting that separates wired and wireless devices. If this is the case, you can turn off the "Wireless Isolation" option in the router control panel.

Published: December 9, 2019 — by Per Christensson

Answer from the PC Help Center