Take a moment and make a note of everything in your home that connects to the internet – all the smartphones, tablets, computers, gaming systems, TVs, video streaming devices, appliances, gadgets and personal assistants (e.g., Alexa, Siri, Google Home).
You probably have more than you realized, and you’re not alone.
Parks Associates reports that the average American household has 10 connected devices, and those devices require Wi-Fi connections. With so many gadgets, you might notice issues with Wi-Fi performance or coverage.
Here are four possible reasons your home Wi-Fi is underperforming – and one surefire way to get the best Wi-Fi connection to power your world.
1. Get the right equipment for the job. Healthy Wi-Fi coverage requires the right equipment for the job. Maybe your wireless router is outdated. Perhaps you bought a router that isn’t best suited to your service.
Call your service provider to verify that you’ve got the best equipment for the job. Be wary of off-the-shelf routers with big price tags and bigger claims – some are wonderful, but most are not optimized for your service and won’t perform as well as the routers recommended by your service provider.
2. Secure your network. If your neighbors are using your Wi-Fi signal to connect their devices, they are likely slowing your connection. Worse yet, an unsecured Wi-Fi network puts your private information at risk.
Make sure your connection is secured with a robust password that only members of your household or approved guests can access.
3. Right-size your connection. The more internet-connected devices in use in your household, the more bandwidth you need to avoid slow connections, buffering and other annoyances. You might need to boost your speed to support your household’s connected devices.
Ultra HD Smart TVs and advanced gaming systems especially need faster connections to support their features.
4. Placement matters. The location of your router determines where your Wi-Fi signal can reach. Walls, windows, floors and other electronic appliances create obstacles that can block or slow your connection.
To achieve even distribution of your signal throughout your home, consider where you most often access the internet, and look for the least obstructed path to those areas. Keep in mind that you might need more than just one router or access point to spread your signal throughout your home.
Access points connect to your main router and create a web – or mesh – of signal connections throughout your home to blanket your home with Wi-Fi coverage, from wall to wall.
5. Customize your Wi-Fi connection for your home and your life.
Make sure every inch of your home is covered with “wall to wall Wi-Fi” access points that are optimized for your service. Most service providers have specialized technicians that will assess your home and your habits to design a Wi-Fi solution that is tailored to your life.
Andres Tovar is vice president of product and marketing for Hargray Communications.