Are you fed up from your Wi-Fi recently? The first thing to come in your mind is to upgrade the hardware; there are mesh routers to Wi-Fi repeaters to help you out. But we would suggest you to first check your home for dead zones and other related things. Don’t worry! You only need some specifically chosen apps to do your research and come up with better solutions.
The first step is to use Ookla Speedtest or Netflix’s Fast Speed Test to check your download and upload speed. Do they match with what was promised by your ISP in the start? Also, check the speed in different rooms of your house and at different spots. Then, with some basic mathematics find the average speed across your house.
To analyze your Wi-Fi wholly, try Wi-Fi Analyzer, which is only available for android. Tap the eye icon and go for Signal meter, then tap on Tap here to select and connect with your home network. You will see the strength reading in dBm or decibel-milliwatt. The lesser value in negative the stronger the network.
-30dBm means a perfect connection. You can stream videos fast enough at -67dBm and -70dBm for emails. When the meter in the app starts to drop into left-hand edge of yellow section (gray section) then, you need to worry about your Wi-Fi signal being too weak.
The best way would be to switch to a different Wi-Fi channel on your routers. You can only do it if your router supports this, a dual band router is sure to do this. In general, there are two channels 2.4GHz and 5GHz. Congestion on a particular channel causes your Wi-Fi signal to drop.
Now, move around your house to test signal strength. Switch to Channel graph or Channel rating in the Wi-Fi analyzer app. It will show you which channel have less congestion. Thereafter, you can shift the channel from your router’s settings.
There are other apps as well which will help you analyze your network. IP Tools (Android and iOS) does the same. Wi-Fi Heatmap (Android) and Wi-Fi Analyzer & Surveyor (Android) can help you mark your signal strength and sketch a floor plan.
Now, when you have actually figured out which areas of your house really need an upgrade; you would not need to roam around with your new hardware to find the optimum position.
The first hardware would be Wi-Fi booster or repeater, they are inexpensive and effectively pass existing Wi-Fi signal to Wi-Fi abandoned places of your house. But the output speed is half of the original speed of your Wi-Fi.
To get faster speeds and reliable connection you should try out powerline networking kit. They spread signals using your house’s current electrical wiring. You will have to spare some extra bucks to get this but the speed and reliability you will get is worth the money.
In the end, mesh Wi-Fi network systems are ruling the market. They offer nodes which together work as a single network. The only drawback is that they are difficult to set up and quite expensive.