Question USB Wireless adapter Huge lag spikes

Mar 23, 2020
Hi everyone!

I've always had some issues with my wifi connection regarding the usb adapter (TPLink RTL8188EU), so whenever I download big files or play online I usually connect my pc to my android phone and select anchor usb so I can use the cellphone as an wifi adapter for the PC.

I've been doing that since recently but It's come to a point where its completly inconvenient to do so, I've tried updating drivers to the tplink adapter, navigate through several commands in the cmd as Administrator, but the difference between the connection using the cellphone vs only the adapter is huge. Playing online games with the adapter is completly impossible.

The download and upload speed on the adapter spikes and so does the latency, causing huge package losses, that doesn't happen when using the phone.

I want to know if there's a chance to fix the adapter or if buying a PCI Express wireless adapter would make any difference, since aparently the specs are mostly the same.


I usually connect my pc to my android phone and select anchor usb so I can use the cellphone as an wifi adapter for the PC.
So you're tethering to your phone, and connecting to your (home?) wifi signal? Just making sure you're not using mobile data...

What phone do you have?

That specific Wifi adapter is a bit old these days - 802.11N, and being a nano USB, won't have any antenna significance.

In terms of 'fixing' the issue - you could try a driver from Realtek or Qualcomm (whoever makes the chip inside), and chances are it would be a little better, as software from TPLink and the like usually falls well behind the actual manufacturer of the chip used.

However, you're still dealing with the limitations of an old(er) wifi adapter.
Quality, modern options exist that use USB too, it's not strictly a USB problem.... although all else being equal, a PCIE card with decent antennas will usually outperform.
What specs do you think are the same.

I really don't understand people buy these type of units for a desktop.....other than they are really cheap.

These tiny units are designed for portable devices. The small size is a advantage for portability and they transmit at low power to save battery. So now you have tiny antenna and low power both which greatly affect the performance. On desktop you really don't care about size and don't worry about power usage.

You can try to use it on a USB extension cable. A desktop has massive amounts of metal that block signals and these tiny units are almost inside the case.

A PCIE card tends to always transmit at full power. They also have large antenna BUT these antenna are located close to the back of the machine which it not the best placement. The best cards have short antenna extension cables that let you place the antenna on top of the machine.
Mar 23, 2020
I've tried with the two cellphones at home, a Samsung J7 and an LG G4 beat, both considerably old phones, but both of them work better than the adapter.

Yes, im using the phone connected to my local wifi signal, and connected via USB to the PC.

The reason to use the cheap usb adapter is that I've recently finished my build and thought the Motherboard included wireless connection, but it was another model with almost the same name. A friend gave me the usb adapter so i could get internet as fast as I can without connecting the phone.

I've tried Realtek drivers, the official webpage doesn't have it, and when triying to install latest drivers adquired at a different webpage windows says that the best drivers options are already installed, and doesn't let me install the ones I've downloaded.

I guess the PCIe card it's the option then, I just wanted to make sure I wouldn't be spending money on something that would persist with the problem.