Modern businesses have become so reliant on their internet connections that poor wireless performance can quickly become a drain on productivity as well as a source of frustration among your employees. Rather than have people wasting their time staring at loading screens and wishing your supposedly ultra-fast internet connection was even a fraction is speedy as advertised, there are a few steps you can take yourself to improve performance.
Before we begin, it’s important to stress that a cabled connection is always superior, so you should connect your devices via an ethernet cable where convenient. Cabled connections are also better for security, but they’re not practical in many situations.
Fortunately, when it comes to performance, a wireless connection should be just about as fast as a cabled one, provided you’ve taken steps to eliminate interference and congestion and upgraded to the latest hardware.
#1. Reduce Interference
Since wireless networks broadcast use radio waves, they’re far more susceptible to interference from other electronic devices such as Bluetooth headsets, microwaves, wireless microphones, mobile phones and other wireless routers.
Although wireless routers broadcast on their own channels, co-channel interference remains a common problem but, fortunately, it’s one that can be easily prevented.
If you have two wireless access points sharing the same channel, the network may become congested and unreliable. However, you can easily change the broadcast channel by accessing the administrator control panel in the router’s webpage. You can reach this page by entering the IP address of the router, which should be written on the back of the device.
#2. Change the Settings
The very first thing you should do when installing a new wireless router is to change the default security settings by logging into the administrator homepage. You should always change the default administrator login password, wireless network key and wireless network name (SSID). Doing so is critical for securing the network and preventing access to outsiders. However, you should also take the time to optimize the settings for better performance.
By default, many routers broadcast at lower data rates the further away you are from the access point. Fortunately, most business routers will allow you to disable these decreased transfer rates and force devices to connect to better access points.
If the options are available with your router, you should also enable both the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands. The 2.4 GHz band is slower, but it offers greater coverage, while the 5 GHz band offers the highest speed while sacrificing signal strength. By enabling both, your users will be able to choose the most suitable connection for their needs.
#3. Upgrade Your Hardware
Sometimes, short of looking for a new internet service provider or changing over to another broadband technology, it’s better just to replace the hardware. This is especially the case if you’re using a much older router that only supports the 802.11b/g WiFi standards. At the very least, you should be using a dual-band 802.11n router and preferably something that offers 802.11ac technology.
All wireless networking specifications are backwards-compatible with previous specifications but, to be able to take advantage of the improvements, you’ll need to ensure that your internet-connected devices also support the latest standard. If not, you can usually install a cheap wireless USB adaptor.
With so many variables at play when it comes to wireless networking, it’s easy to misdiagnose problems that may stem from your service provider itself. That’s why every business should have a backup. Truewater’s redundant wireless internet service NeverDown offers companies peace of mind by making internet outages a thing of the past. Contact us today to find out more.