Difference Between Router and Modem

There are certain things about which most of people don’t know properly. Interesting point is that most of those ‘unknown’ things lie in the technology sector. Talking about those things, the two that pop-up in my mind first are Modem and Router. These are computer peripherals and are used in networking. I’m sure you must have heard about both of them. But many of us are not clear about how exactly these are different from one another. There are many differences between a router and a modem. Here are the major ones.


Modem is a device that is used to connect computer to Internet. Modem connects computer to telephone, and converts the telephone’s data signals to those understandable by computer. This results in the Internet access on PC.


Router is a device that is not used or required to have access to Internet on primary computer. It is used to allow many devices on the same network to communicate with one another. An Ethernet wire is used to connect any other device to network through router. Router comes with some certain no. of ports in it, where the Ethernet wire is plugged in.


Most of the modems don’t offer any security against hackers and viruses. So the security level with modems is pretty low. On the contrary, the routers offer certain level of security. They come with the firewalls to protect you from viruses and hackers. The level of security that you get, depends on the router you use. Of course, a ‘good’ one costs ‘good’.


If you want to access Internet on PC through telephone, then it’s not possible without modem. Like I said, it is modem that makes the data coming over telephone lines, understandable by our PC. So, if you have modem, you can connect it to Internet. There is no need of router at all.

If you want to share information between computers on the same network, then it’s possible only when you use router. Router can’t connect to Internet itself. Modem is required for this purpose.


Since the modem is used to connect your PC to Internet, it comes with only 1 port. On the other hand, number of ports in router can be anything from 2 to 8. It depends on the type of router you opt for.


When applying for broadband connection, it is Internet Service Provider (ISP) that issues modem. Any particular ISP offers mostly one type of modem to all of its users. There are many types of routers available in the market. They differ in the factors like – wireless or not, number of ports, cost, etc.