WiFi has become the method most if not all of our devices are connected to the Internet today. Mobile phones, laptops, smart TVs and the ever-growing list of connected appliances and devices in our homes and offices use Wi-Fi to get on the World Wide Web. Often, we just plug in the router and connect our devices without giving it a second thought. Outdated firmware, misplaced locations and other router-related issues can dramatically decrease Internet speeds. Here are a few tips to help you make sure you are getting the fastest speeds possible.
1- Location, Location, Location
It might seem obvious, but the router being in a central location is essential for optimal coverage in your home or place of business. Often, users choose to place their router next to other electronic devices or inside cabinets and cupboards. Instead, users should aim to install their WiFi router in an area with the least amount of physical obstacles that might hinder the radio waves or interfere with them.
2- Update Your Router Firmware
Regularly updating your router’s firmware is essential both for security reasons as well as speed and quality of the connections to your devices. Hackers often take advantage of weak points that are easily resolved with the latest firmware patches you can easily download and update.
3- Upgrade Your Router
If your router is a few years old, chances are it’s a 802.11g or 802.11n router. Investing in better hardware is one of the surest ways to make sure you make the most out of your Internet connection, and the 802.11ac router would be the best upgrade you can make, especially if your laptops and devices are Wireless AC ones.
4- Increase Range
Given that WiFi uses radio waves to communicate with your devices, you can amplify the range with a few simple DIY tweaks. One idea is to use tin foil and shape it in a semi-circular way in the direction you want to amplify the range. Another is to get a cable that you can attach to your router’s twist-off antenna, allowing you to move the antennae closer to the area you want the signal to become stronger in.
5- Use Less Crowded Channels
Routers are able to operate on various channels, and often your router will choose the least crowded one to use. The reason for crowding, especially in cities and public areas, is other WiFi routers. Your neighbors, nearby restaurants and the coffee shop down the block probably have WiFi routers too and this can degrade your signal due to interference. Network Analyzer Lite or WiFi Analyzer can help you make sure your WiFi network isn’t being crowded by others on the same channel, and you can switch channels manually if you believe your router can perform better on a less congested channel.
WiFi at 8mbps
The world average speed is at around 6 mbps, and even though in many places it can be much higher, the average in Jordan of 8mbps is more than enough for streaming Netflix in HD and normal surfing of media-rich websites such as your Facebook newsfeed and Twitter timeline. Often, the problem users have with Internet speed is due to poor router maintenance, location and outdated hardware.
With these simple tips and tricks, you can ensure you get the most out of your Internet connection and you’ll be able to surf the web, stream your favorite content and download/upload your work without a hiccup.