Proven Tips that Boost Wireless Signal
Did you know that, according to CISCO, Wi-Fi and mobile-connected devices will generate about 70% of all Internet traffic in 2017? It's easy to understand why this may happen: people are using mobile gadgets in larger and larger numbers. So, the number of wireless networks can only grow in the future.
However, as surprising as it may seem, Wi-Fi hasn't evolved a lot lately. Even with today's most modern routers, people continue to experience sudden network slow downs, and sometimes even disconnects. Download speeds fluctuate a lot, and whenever you power on the microwave oven, which uses the same frequency with your Wi-Fi, you may lose wireless signal for good! And even if things work (apparently) well, specialists tell us that we should reboot our routers regularly, because this will improve network performance. So, what is a fella supposed to do to get and keep a strong Wi-Fi connection? Cheer up, because this article has all the key answers!
1. Use better antennas. Not all antennas are created equal, and most vendors use cheap components. So, go online and purchase an antenna that has a higher dBi gain. Most manufacturers ship their products with 5dBi antennas, so any replacement that has a gain of 9dBi or more will significantly improve Wi-Fi signal. For laptops, you can either purchase a new wireless adapter that has a good antenna, or you can utilize an external antenna that is connected to the Wi-Fi board using a standard connector or adapter.
2. Find the best spot for your router. If you want all your devices to have a strong signal, place the router in the center of the desired coverage area. Sometimes you will need more signal in a particular room, though; if this is the case, move the router closer to that room.
3. If the router can't deliver enough wireless signal, it may be time to replace it. Yes, you'll have to spend some money, but you will get a faster and (much more important) fully secured Wi-Fi network. If you go this route, pick a router that has as many antennas as possible, because this will significantly increase signal coverage. This is an area where you'll see huge differences between a $50 and a $100 router, both in terms of performance and features.
4. If you continue to have signal-related problems even after replacing the router, your home may be a bit too big for a single router. In this case, a Wi-Fi repeater, which receives signal from the existing router, amplifies it, and then rebroadcasts it, may work wonders. Be sure to place the signal repeater in-between the router and the devices that need a stronger wireless signal. And if you feel geeky, you can download DD-WRT, install it on an old router, and then turn it into a modern Wi-Fi repeater. Why spend money on a signal repeater when you've got an old, unused router?
5. If nothing works as expected, it's time to switch to a wired network. Hold on, I'm not saying that you should connect your tablet to the Internet using a LAN plug, because there are other alternatives. A pair of Powerline adapters can connect to your home's electrical outlets, and then work as two access points. Basically, the Wi-Fi signal is converted to digital signal, which travels across the electric lines. Then, it is reconverted to wireless signal at the other end, being restored and broadcasted. Powerline adapters can be a bit expensive, but they work fine even if the receiving unit is placed hundreds of feet away from the sender.
As you can see, there are several powerful tips that will help you set up a solid Wi-Fi network. Test these methods, one at a time, until you are happy with the result. You can also combine a few of them and see even better results.