In a previous blog post, titled ‘How to improve your Wi-Fi connection (Part one)’, we spoke about the top 3 most common problems causing Wi-Fi performance problems and its respective solutions. Below is a follow-up list of potential obstacles and/or quick and simple solutions that may strengthen your WiFi connection.
Monitor your network and analyze data using your personal devices
Monitor the surrounding Wi-Fi networks and any device with a Wi-Fi connection (cellphones, laptops, tablets) via a Wi-Fi monitoring Tool. See everything that happens on wireless networks in your area and view detailed metrics, such as connection quality, data rates, signal strength, encryption types, channel and etc.
Wi-Fi monitoring applications can give you a general overview of multiple networks and inform you when there isn’t enough network coverage, or the connection is slow and the signal is weak. Some examples of these applications include: Wifi Analyzer and PingTools Network Utilities (for Android); Network Analyzer lite (for iOS).
*Remember that the strength of a Wi-Fi signal can depend on or is affected by the quality of the router, the speed of the connection, the SSIDs, the location of the APs, and more.
Map your Wi-Fi coverage
The best way to find external Wi-Fi interferences, outside of those found in your home is by using Wi-Fi mapping tools. Tools like the Ekahau heatmapper allows users to survey their site or upload a map image, and determine the strength of the overall wireless coverage of the access points and routers deployed. Once the site is surveyed, the service will display colorful heat maps to indicate the strength of the signal and help the user determine the locations where the quality of Wi-Fi connectivity is most affected. NetSpot is another Wireless Network Analyzer tool or application that, with its heat-mapping feature, can help you identify interference, uncover dead spots and optimize AP location.
Select a different Wi-Fi channel
When there is too much interference, it is best to change to a different wireless channel or the speed of your Wi-Fi connection will be affected. Since a Wi-Fi router can operate on a number of channels, the key to picking the right channel for your network is by using tools like, Wi-Fi stumblers or Wi-Fi analyzer tools (like NetSpot) to help you find an interference-free channel.
Be sure to update your firmware
Although this one may seem a little obvious, it is suprising how often people overlook this simple step when struggling with a weak connection.
If you have an outdated/older router, upgrading its firmware can advance your router’s performance. Firmware updating can often improve the privacy of your router and enable you to add more functionalities (such as bandwidth control). Keep in mind that many router manufacturers provide easy download access to the latest firmware updates. Moreover, Cloud-based Wi-Fi software like Tanaza also allow you to upgrade your wireless devices remotely, in 1 click.