The internet has come a long way since the days of dial-up and the speeds we enjoy these days seemed impossible 20 years ago. However, as internet speeds have improved so too have our expectations increased. The modern user expects fast, reliable broadband which typically can be found with most providers on a wired connection but WiFi can still be patchy.
There are many causes for inconsistent WiFi from the type of property you live in to interference from other devices but equally there are many ways to increase the stability of the connection and the speeds it delivers. Here are some tips to speed your WiFi up.
Check your signal
Speak to your ISP about the signal level in your home and confirm that the bandwidth of your package can cope with the total devices in your property. The average household of 4 to 5 people requires a speed of 50 Mbps on downloads and 5 mbps for uploads. You can also use a free speed test service to see the speeds you are getting compared to what you pay to receive. Other analytics tools can give insight into signal strength, interference and other factors.
Separate your frequencies
There are two different kinds of WiFi; the older 2.4 GHz and the newer 5 GHz. Some routers combine the two and have settings to put you on the strongest signal but this can be counterintuitive. Newer devices often automatically connect to the strongest 5 GHz channel rather than the strongest overall channel. The older 2.4 GHz frequency can often be more powerful than the 5 GHz if you are separated from your router by a couple of floors or walls. Separating your frequencies can ensure you can switch to the long (2.4) or short (5) connection based on the location in your house for the smoothest connection available.
Relocate your router
The location of your router is important to it functioning to the best of its ability. A router needs breathing space so should be located as high as possible and with a clear line of sight to living areas. The 5 GHz channel cannot penetrate walls like 2.4 GHz can so needs to have as few barriers as possible in order to give the fastest connection.
Keep your router clear of other electronic devices and try to place mirrors nearby to help guide the signal around the home. Alternatively you can invest in an extender or amplifier, or better still an internet access point.
Protect your WiFi
It’s possible that your WiFi is slow because it is being hacked or piggybacked by neighbours. Your router may already have a password but if it is the preset, manufacturer provided password it could be easily guessed or found on the internet. Set up a new password that won’t be easily guessed. Go one better and set up a guest connection for visitors to keep the integrity of your password.
Upgrade your hardware
Hardware provided by your ISP is often designed to last a contract cycle, 12-18 months, so cannot always be trusted to use the latest standard. Find compatible dual-band routers that uses 802.11AC—the latest standard in wireless—and preferably one with an external antenna for a more powerful boost. You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars, talk to Technology Traders
– the technology repair experts the place to go to buy, sell, repair and trade phones, tablets, laptops and computers for those who value reliability and convenience – for advice on how to speed up your WiFi network and to find the right hardware for you.