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How you can improve your Wi-Fi connection

It can be quite ennoying when surfing the web, that things getting slower or that the connection gets interrupted.

First, be sure to check your computer, laptop or tablet that you don't have too many application running, too many browser windows open.
And check that low speed connection isn't caused by other family members who might do file-sharing, gaming or watching online video.

It is also a good idea to check the speed of the wired connection and after that the wireless connection, so you can compare those speeds.

BTW, here's more on certain Wi-Fi Network Connection Problems and What To Do About It


Testing the speed of the internet connection
Make sure you have a wired connection between your computer and modem/router.
Go to Speedtest.net and check the speed. If it's considerably lower than what it should be, then contact your provider about it.
If speed is okay then check your wireless home network should be checked. You can do with your laptop by going to several places in your home and check the speed at these places. This way you get an impression where connection speed is too low.


Router
If your have a 802.11b or g router then consider getting a router with a more recent standard of 802.11n - also called wireless N router - , or a router with the new standard: 802.11AC.
The router's software should also be up-to-date, so upgrade to a newer firmware version if that is available. You'll find more info about that in the device's manual or visit the brand's website.


Here's what you can do to have your router and its connection function as optimal as possible:

Give space to your router
Take care of enough space around the router - less obstacles around the router means better wireless connection / signal.
Turning the router somewhat may also get a better connection.


Signal interference
Try to avoid obstacles and avoid interference from wireless devices such as cordless phones, microwave ovens, bluetooth devices and baby monitors.


Distance
Less distance between router and computer, the better the connection is. So a centralized postion is best for the router.


Use a less crowded channel
When you've got many neighbours who also use a wireless router then it might be a good idea to look for a less-used channel. Be sure that on the surrounding channels isn't much activity.
To check this you can use the 'Wifi Analyzer' app - for owners of Android phones, or use Metageek's 'inSSIDer' which is for Wiundows and Mac OS.

Another way to check the channels - speed of the internet- , is going to speedtest.net where you can test all channels.
On the configuration page of your router you can change channels.


5 GHz frequency band vs 2.4 GHz
In case you've got a dual-band router you can switch to 5GHz if your devices are compatible to the 5 GHz band. Advantages of this bandwidth is that it is faster, more stable and you have less hinder from wireless devices such as alarmsystems or babyphones.
5GHz bandwidth is also quite suitable for HD media streaming.

A disadvantage is that the 5 GHz signal has more difficulty going through obstacles such as wall and floors. Distance is up to 460 ft. for a 802.11n compatible device, where a 2.4GHz device reaches up to 820 ft..
Therefore the 2.4 GHz bandwidth is more suitable for a house with more floors. Besides that, it works fine for everyday web browsing.
In case you have 802.11ac compatible devices, the distance can also be up to 820 ft. and speed is up to three times faster than the 802.11n standard.

In general you could say that with dual-band Wi-Fi you have more range and faster speed.


Receiver (antenna) in your wireless device
Wireless connection also depends on the quality of the device's antenna. The better antenna the better connection. For example, usually a laptop has a better (larger) antenna - thus better signal reception - than a smartphone with a small antenna.


Wi-Fi Repeater / Range Extender
When the signal is weak in a certain area of your house, you might consider using a wireless repeater, also called range extender, or using a powerline adapter.

Place the repeater/extender there where a good signal can be received from the router, so a good signal can then be send on to the area where the router doesn't have enough reach.
Mind though, that in weaker signal area's you may have no problem surfing the web, but the speed usually is too low for downloading large files such as movies via repeater/extender.
Here's a list of best rated Wi-Fi range extenders.

Powerline Adapter
An wired alternative to a repeater/extender device is the powerline adapter-set. One adapter must be placed near the router and be attached by wire. The other adapter needs to be attached to the computer. Connection between the adapters goes via the powerlne in your home.
Here's an example of a popular Powerline Adapter at Amazon.

Newest powerline adapter models also have Wi-Fi, so you can use your tablets and smartphone further away from your router.



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Data and prices are subject to change.


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