Having a slow Internet connection that experiences interruptions during video chats, online gaming, or while streaming your favorite movie is extremely frustrating. Wi-Fi speed can be increased by upgrading to an Internet plan in a higher speed tier, but that isn’t the only way to make your Internet work faster.
Why is my Wi-Fi slow?
The first step to increasing Wi-Fi speed is knowing why it’s slow in the first place. In addition to researching the speeds included in your current Internet package, here are other factors that could be slowing you down.
- Hardware: Outdated equipment may not be set up for surfing the Internet at faster speeds. Make sure computers, modems, and routers are capable of handling the speeds you need.
- Sharing: Some providers don’t give customers a dedicated Internet connection. Rather, multiple users in the same area all share the same connection. This can make high traffic times like prime time and weekends really bogged down, which will slow down your connection.
- Multiple Devices: The more people and devices using the Internet connection, the slower speeds may be. When multiple users try to stream video, play games, video chat with Grandma, and instant message all at the same time, speeds can slow to a crawl.
- Location: Pay attention to where the wireless router is located. Cabinets and basements are bad places to put a router. The router needs to be out in the open to provide the best signal possible. If you want Wi-Fi throughout your entire house, a central location can also make a difference.
How can I improve my Wi-Fi speed?
Paying for more bandwidth is always an option, but it’s not the only one. When you know why your Internet connection is sluggish, there are other things you can do to get faster speeds. These are some easy, inexpensive ways to increase Wi-Fi speeds.
- Update Software: Routers need to have regular firmware updates. Reaching new speeds might be as simple as performing a standard update.
- Take Control: Most routers come with Quality of Service (QoS) settings that allow you limit or prioritize the bandwidth certain applications and services use. Video chats, online gaming, and video streaming are common culprits that use a large amount of bandwidth. Change the QoS settings for these applications to limit the bandwidth they use to help streamline Wi-Fi speeds.
- Extend Your Router: Homemade Wi-Fi extenders made from tin foil or aluminum cans can help boost the range of a router, which can make connection speeds faster.
- Change the Channel: Routers use different wireless channels to receive and broadcast signals. Try changing the channel on your router to increase speeds and reliability.
Slow Internet is frustrating, but you don’t have to live with it. Keep Wi-Fi speeds optimum by making sure you have the right package from your provider and maintaining your wireless network properly.