Whether you connect with cable, DSL, fiber or satellite, one device likely isn’t enough. Broadcast your Internet signal throughout your home for even more options. Users in your family can log in to your wireless Internet connection from anywhere in the house.
What can you connect to a single wireless signal?
The more devices you connect, the higher speed tier you’ll need from your provider. Share files, folder, printers, scanners and more on your home network.
How can you get the most out of your connection for the fastest wireless Internet speed possible? Speed tiers, hardware and configuration can factor into what determines the fastest wireless Internet. Network security becomes crucial. It’s key to performance for your devices, but also to protect to personal data.
Here’s how long some of your favorite activities will take with different speeds.
|3 Mbps||5 Mbps||10 Mbps||15 Mbps|
|How long will it take to open up Facebook?||2 sec||1 sec||< 1 sec||< 1 sec|
|How fast can I upload a photo to Instagram?||20 sec||12 sec||6 sec||3 sec|
|Can I stream music on Spotify without skipping?||yes||yes||yes||yes|
|Can I stream a Netflix movie without buffering?||SD quality||HD quality||HD quality||HD quality|
A few adjustments can produce greater coverage and speed on your network.
Routers broadcast in all directions, especially horizontally, laterally and downward as they move away. Choose the coaxial jack nearest the center of your home. The top floor usually works best. A shelf is preferable the floor or a closet.
Does your signal die? Have you noticed more buffering on devices as you stream music and movies? It might be time for a router upgrade. A dual-band router can handle the demands of simultaneous web use. Dual-band routers operate on a less congested bandwidth, which also improves your signal.
Your router’s neighborhood, that is. Metal tables and walls disrupt a wireless signal. Wood isn’t a problem. Baby monitors, cordless phones and microwave ovens can jam your router’s frequency. Moving these items can help you increase your wireless Internet speed.
Wi-Fi extenders or repeaters increase the reach for your wireless signal. It receives the signal the way a device would on the network, and boosts it to more rooms of the house. Extenders can double your signal reach, even to patios and other areas outside your home.
You can test your actual wireless Internet speed online. It will measure the time it takes data to travel from your computer from the Internet. What if the speed falls short of what you’re paying for? Wireless Internet speed tests can determine whether the issue comes from hardware or the network.
For best accuracy, disconnect all other devices and close applications before you test. It’ll take less than a minute, and will measure both download and upload speed.
Download speed refers to the rate at which you take items from the Internet. This includes documents, music and movie streaming.
Upload speed refers to the rate at which you send items to the Internet. This includes posting video, photos, and graphics to social media and other websites.
Many tests also check for jitter and latency. Jitter measures packet delay variation. Latency refers to the time it takes one of those data packets to travel through the network.
Speedtest.net is the top recommended tool from our experts for testing your wireless Internet speed.
Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA2) and Wired Equivalent Privacy (WAP) help keep your network secure from intruders. WPA2, the newer of the two technologies, is recommended. Unauthorized users can slow connection time for devices in your home.
There’s also potential to access private data or infect your network with malware. Authorities could trace illegal activity from your network to you, not the unauthorized user. Encryption isn’t always on by default, so check for this when you install your network.
Password strength is crucial. Choose one with as many characters as possible. Use letters (capitalized and lower-case), numbers and symbols included.
Don’t leave the default password in place when you install a router. This password gives users access to administration functions on your network. With that access, a hacker could change settings and passwords and lock you out of your own network.
The SSID (service set identifier) usually is the name of your provider. Change it to one that doesn’t divulge personal information. Avoid names, addresses and phone numbers.
Cable, DSL, fiber and satellite providers often offer Double Play bundles with home phone. Some are on a digital network, and offer solid network reliability. Bundle Internet, TV and home phone for a Triple Play. These often are the most cost-efficient bundle options.