This is an irritating omission BT have made from their TV Box model. For whatever reason, they haven’t built in Wi-Fi functionality, so you have to use a wired ethernet connection to get it to work.
But how does this work if your BT TV Box is a long way from the router, and it’s not so easy or straightforward to run a network cable straight to it? You may be using the Box on the other side of the house from the router.
Thankfully, there are a couple of ways around this problem:
You can run a long ethernet cable from your router to the BT TV Box if this is feasable. Alternatively, you can also use a powerline adapter kit, which consists of a pair of adapters which can send data to each other through the electrical wiring of the house to create a wired internet connection anywhere you like in the home.
These are basically just two different ways of getting a wired connection to your TV Box, so you can use it even though it doesn’t have Wi-Fi functionality.
Let’s look at each option in more detail.
Option #1 – Run a Long Ethernet Cable if Possible
This is often a clumsly solution, but can still sometimes be done if you are a long way from the router. You can still run a long ethernet cable from your router to your BT TV Box.
Click here to view 10 metre ethernet cables on Amazon. You can also get shorter (5m) or even longer (20m+) cables if you like, depending on how far you are from the router.
Admittedly, lots of people don’t want to be trailing long wires all through their home if their TV Box is a long way from the router, which is where the next solution of a powerline adapter comes in.
Option #2 – Use a Powerline Adapter
If using long ethernet cables isn’t your preference, then a powerline adapter kit can also provide a wired ethernet connection to your BT TV Box (or any other device), without the need to run long cables through the house.
Powerline adapter kits come as a pair of plugs, with 1 (or more) ethernet ports built in.
Here’s how you get them to work:
- Plug one adapter into a wall socket and connect it to your router.
- Plug the other adapter into a wall socket and connect it to your BT TV Box
- The two plugs then communicate through the electrical wiring of the house to deliver a wired internet connection to your TV Box.
So they basically do the same job as a long ethernet cable, but you only have to use two short ones at each to connect each adapter to your router and TV Box, instead of running a 10 metre or longer one through the house.
Powerline Adapters Explained in 2 Minutes
They are an excellent way of bypassing weak Wi-Fi, or a total lack of Wi-Fi in the case of the BT TV Box, and getting onto a strong wired connection even at distance from the router.
They will work fine in most houses, as long as the wiring is in good condition and you aren’t running any high power use devices like dryers right near the adapters.
This is only a basic model, and some people don’t want to lose the plug sockets they use them in, because they may be running short on them. In this case, models are available with an integrated plug socket to get around this problem, as well as more advanced models with multiple ethernet ports and/or Wi-Fi functionality.
Autumn 2020 Update – There is a shortage of some of the TP Link models on Amazon – there is a delay in delivering some models, but not all. You may have to browse through a few models before you find one that is readily available. These supply issues should be resolved by late October/November 2020.
The Nano 1000 model pictured and linked above is available at the time of writing. If you need a model with an integrated plug socket, then the TP Link 4022 P-Kit, with passthrough socket and 2 ports, is also available at the time of writing.
If you want a model that also has Wi-Fi on the receiving end, to also connect up smaller devices like tablets and phones, then Wi-Fi friendly models are also available.
Other powerline brands like Netgear and Tenda are also available – we tend to link to TP Link because they are high quality models which are all cross compatible with each other. But all brands of powerline adapter will do the same job.