Reliable WiFi is critical in most homes today as it is the communication vehicle for numerous electronic devices. Without it, much of our technology grinds to a halt.
Not only do our smartphones, tablets and gaming devices connect via WiFi but 4K televisions, smart thermostats management, multi-room speaker systems, laptops and printers also use WiFi. The bandwidth demands placed on your home's WiFi system are taxed by these devices so it's crucial to optimize it's output and performance.
1. Place your router in a central location in your home
2. Invest in a wireless extender (also called a repeater) to boost WiFi reach, especially if you live in a larger home or have areas with poor reception.
3. Check with your Internet service provider to see if they offer faster Internet service
4. Make sure you have the latest router with 802.11ac speeds to boost reach, support simultaneous users and increase speed
5. Choose a router that offers dual connection options of both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. This minimizes device interference. 2.4 offers slower speed but wider reach while 5GHz operates faster. Connect cordless phones, baby monitors and microwaves to 2.4 and devices requiring higher speeds to 5 GHz.
6. Password protect your WiFi network so others don't 'stow away' on your service and slow it down. This also keeps you from being liable for illegal content unwanted users may download from your WiFi.
7. Set up a guest network password for friends and visitors to use.
8. Make sure your modem is also up-to-date. If you also need to upgrade your router, consider a bundled option.
There are a number of free 'apps' to test WiFi speed, such as speedtest.net, that will give you an idea of the bandwidth of critical devices.
Common sense tip: When using public WiFi, never enter in personal or sensitive information, such as passwords, bank accountor credit card details. Its best to do that off WiFi or using your own, secure network.