Did you know that one device with a slow connection can slow down WiFi for the entire network? Unfortunately, it’s true!  A device with very poor coverage that takes up an excessive amount of capacity on your wireless network, can cause performance to plummet for all of your devices. How do you know if you have one of these devices and what can you do to restore your WiFi network speed?

How to Identify Why a Device has Poor Coverage?

Network SpeedThere are many issues that can cause your devices to have poor coverage and thus slow down the speed of your network. Follow these tips to get the highest performance of your network:

  1. Ensure that you do not have smartphones or tablets around or charging, with poor signal strength, and most likely downloading upgrades in the background without your knowledge.
  2. Check to make sure that your PC or other devices are not too far from the nearest wireless access point.
  3. Make sure that you are not running old hardware and firmware that doesn’t support the latest and fastest standards for wireless communication.
  4. Check to make sure that nothing is interfering with your wireless signal.
  5. Make sure that your workstations are maintained and optimized regularly.

As an example, if you have several people working on their personal computers, but also have their cellphones connected to the network while charging at their desk, this could be slowing down your network.

How Can a Device Slow the Network?

It’s all about airtime! Airtime is a percentage of wire transmission that is available in a certain area. The entirety of airtime is always 100%. A device with a poor connection will require more time from the router to exchange data. This demands more airtime and leaves less capacity for other devices to share.

A device that has good coverage, will transfer data fast and use less airtime, but even a newer device will be affected if a slower device is taking up a significant amount of airtime. The formula for calculating airtime used by a device is 1 Mb divided by link speed/transfer speed in Mbps.

What Can You Do Increase Network Speed?

Here are a few steps that you can take to decrease the effect of slow devices and increase your network speed.

  1. Place your router in a centrally located area to ensure optimal coverage.
  2. Turn Wi-Fi off on devices that are not in use to ensure that they are not affecting the network.
  3. Ensure that wireless extenders or repeaters or are within range of the main router.
  4. Check to make sure that your devices are running the most current software. Run any updates that are needed.

Note: If you have not made the upgrade to Windows 10, it is critical that you take this step. Windows 10 improves the speed, security, and performance of your PC. Find the Windows 10 upgrade information here.

In addition to the tips above, there is a variety of software available that we can recommend based on your business needs.

Ask Bennett Office Technologies for a Free Assessment!

We can help ensure that your network is running at maximum speed. Our team would be happy to recommend a more permanent solution that identifies slow devices and provides the best possible performance for your business or home.

Bennett Office Technologies works closely with clients to increase and maintain your network speed. For assistance on determining your personal or business computer needs contact our team of experts at Bennett Office Technologies. Business owners are welcome to complete our Technology Assessment form and we’ll contact you to do a free assessment.

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