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Can You Connect an Ethernet Cable to a Smart TV? (And Pros and Cons)

Last Updated Mar 25, 2022

A smart TV is a convenient addition to any home because it allows viewers to stream from any application straight to the TV. Many people use a Wi-Fi connection to use their smart TV, but sometimes this is not always possible. When your TV doesn’t connect to the Wi-Fi, you may wonder if you can use an ethernet cable with your smart TV.

An ethernet cable can connect to the smart TV through the ethernet port on the back of the television. To set up an internet connection:

  1. Connect the cable to the Wi-Fi router.
  2. Access the network settings on the TV and select the option to use wired internet.
  3. Enter your Wi-Fi password.

You may still be wondering exactly how to use the Wi-Fi router and an ethernet cable with your smart television. Don’t worry; we will cover the setup process below, as well as discuss the pros and cons of using an ethernet cable.

Do Smart TVs Connect to Ethernet?

Almost every smart TV will have an ethernet cable port located somewhere on the back of the television. Follow these steps below to connect the ethernet cable:

  1. Plug the cable into the Wi-Fi router. Use one end of the cable to plug into your Wi-Fi router. Make sure your router is on and working.
  2. Plug the other end into the TV. Find the ethernet port on the TV and plug the other end of the cable into it.
  3. Use Network Settings. Turn the TV on and go into Settings and then Network Settings from your TV’s homepage.
  4. Select Wired Internet. The settings should give you an option to Enable Wired Internet or Use Wired Internet Connection.
  5. Type in the Wi-Fi password. The TV will now ask you to enter your Wi-Fi’s password. It will probably be on the back or side of your router somewhere if you have not yet set up a personalized password.
  6. Make sure it’s working. The TV will probably display a success message. Try accessing an app or streaming service to ensure the setup worked.

What Type of Ethernet Cable Do I Need for a Smart TV?

Not all ethernet cables are the same. Some will be much more reliable and faster than others. The list below shows the top three choices.

Is Ethernet Better Than Wi-Fi For Smart TVs?

Depending on your situation, an ethernet cable can give you a more successful internet connection. However, there are also some minor inconveniences when using a cable as opposed to Wi-Fi.

  • Stable connection every time. With a wired connection, you get the same speed and consistency every time.
  • Better for streaming. The higher bandwidth allows streaming apps to work quicker and longer without interrupting frequencies.
  • Uses less power. Ethernet usually requires less power to use and is more energy-efficient.
  • Fewer disconnections. There are no bandwidth reductions or radio frequencies to get in the way of the connection.

Ethernet has some major advantages. There are a few disadvantages to using a cable, though:

  • TV and router have to be close. Since there will be a cable running between the TV and router, they will have to be in the same room with a small distance between them.
  • Not ideal for pets and children. Unless you have the TV and router right next to each other, there will be a cord on the ground. This could be dangerous for small children or pets.
  • Less mobility. If you want to move your TV to another room, you will also need to move the router and the cable. This could prove to be a hassle.

How Much Faster is Ethernet than Wi-Fi?

We already discussed that the ethernet connection is always stable, but is it that much faster? While this can depend on your location and provider, ethernet is almost always faster than Wi-Fi.

  • Ethernet can be up to 10Gbps. Wi-Fi can usually only get to about 6.9bps.
  • Faster data transfer. Through ethernet, data is transferred directly from the router to the TV. With Wi-Fi, data has to go through all the local interference before it gets to the TV.
  • Better security. Without traveling through the air, your data will be kept more secure and away from interceptions. This is another reason the data also gets to the TV much faster than with Wi-Fi.

Final Thoughts

Ethernet cables can be great for a stable connection and can be used by plugging the cable into the TV and then connecting it to the Wi-Fi router. Try it out the next time your regular Wi-Fi doesn’t seem to be doing the trick!

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