Reasons why your internet has connectivity issues and what you can do about it

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We all face terrible connectivity issues and they annoy us so much that we literally take our anger out on our phone or laptops. It must be noted that people lived through the age when it took nearly 5 minutes to set up an internet connection, and it hasn’t been long since then; Just a couple of decades or so. Today, with internet connectivity required on the go, people hate it when the network doesn’t respond within seconds.

There are still instances or slow internet connections, but maybe the actual reason behind the network being slow can be different than just blaming your Internet Service Provider. For this very purpose, this article highlights some important issues which could be the reason of your bad internet connection.

If your network connection is at your home


There are chances that the network plan you opted for ages is now simply outdated or more commonly put obsolete. Therefore, if you haven’t upgraded your network connection for a long time, this is the culprit for all those slow speeds. What you can do is, just ring up customer support, and ask them to upgrade your plan on a new infrastructure if it is available in your area. A lot has changed by the introduction the fiber optic technology and Gigabit plans, so you would be shocked by seeing the results.

It is also highly probable that you are simply too far off from the router. With our large homes and apartments, a single router isn’t really enough to cover the whole house as there are bound to be networking dead zones. Either you can opt for mesh-networking through which there will be a central router and multiple satellite routers to cover your whole place, or you can try to put your existing router in a central location. This way, the signals would spread equally around, and could possibly cover your place. Else, you can also opt for repeaters and extenders.

But what if you are within range, but still the connection sucks? The problem might be with your old router. With new emerging technologies every year, routers get outdated pretty fast. There are new standards out there such as the 802.11ac. Through this new channel, internet speeds have improved drastically. Therefore, if your router is old, it won’t be capable of working on this channel and hence you are missing out on speed. Not only this but routers these days also have MU-MIMO technology, through which signals are focused where they are needed the most, rather than just spreading them around. This improves the Wi-Fi range and hence connectivity. Thus, you should simply look for a new router.

Another common issue might be interference. To be honest, you can’t really do much about it. Though there are still ways to avoid it at least. Interference can be caused by electrical equipment which operates at the same frequency as your router. This can be by the Bluetooth devices, microwaves for instances as well as all the smart tech gadgets we love to have. The interference is usually on the 2.4 GHz band though.

Not only this, but interference can also occur by other routers in the vicinity operating on the channel and this is common when living in an apartment especially. Since the 5 GHz band on the new routers isn’t as widely used in other electronics, you can buy a new router which automatically selects the best channel automatically upon a reboot.

If you don’t want to buy a new router then you can use a WIFI analytic tool to find the best channel, and set your router manually to it, through the router’s settings page.

Phones where connectivity is required instantly

Multiple users of the same network in the vicinity are one of the common reasons for phone networks getting slow. This can happen for instance at a grand concert since the traffic gets too high to sustain for a single tower. There isn’t much you can do about it, except that you get out of that place.

Carriers also do network throttling which is rather unfair. It is known that carriers intentionally reduce your speed a bit when you opt for unlimited data plans. See it like this, since with an unlimited data plan you are much likely to use data more than those on a limited plan. Therefore, to ensure that those on budget plans do not get affected by heavy downloads, carriers usually decrease your speed by a small factor, and you wouldn’t know.

It might also be that the area you are in has poor coverage. Not every time is the Wi-Fi indicator true to itself. It reports wrong sometimes, so it might be possible that you aren’t really in a good coverage area but your phone’s Wifi indicator makes you think you are. To see if this is a problem then you need to turn your Wifi Signal into decibel-milliwatts.

On iPhones, with the advent of iOS 11, it is not possible to do so. Before one could have turned on the Field Test mode but that is gone now. For Androids, it is fairly easy still. You just need to visit the Settings and then head over to About Phone and then to Status to see the signal strength between -50dBm and -120 dBm.

At public places

The reason why the internet might be slow at a public place is quite similar to what the reasons at your home or on phone might be. There might be many users on a single network causing network congestion and speeds to slow down. This can be seen while attending a lecture in a university auditorium with many students, with each of their mobile Wi-Fi’s turned on, the internet seems to stop working altogether.

A slower connection is also possible especially for budget small business who don’t want to spend extra to get premium data plans. Also, there might again be Wi-Fi dead zones. The only solution, in this case, is to move until you get a good signal and hence better internet connectivity.

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