One of the hardest things to experience while working remotely is bad internet connections. In office-based work, there is a dedicated tech support team to handle such problems. You just have to report it and wait until the internet speeds back up again. Unfortunately, the freedom of working remotely also means that you have to solve the problems yourself.
Here are 7 tried-and-tested tips for better speed and connectivity:
Run some tests.
Are you sure the problem is with your internet connection? Sometimes, your computer may be lagging or cables might need upgrading.
The most popular way for internet speed tests is through Ookla Speedtest, which detects your IP and tells you the download and upload speed of your current connection. Is there a cause for concern?
If either download or upload speed is low, you can try and move to another spot. Use your phone to see if obstructions are the culprit of your internet speed issues.
Move your router.
If you don’t know it yet, walls, big furniture like cabinets and house fixtures, trees, glass and other physical objects could block the signals sent out by the modem or router. When this happens, signals cannot pass through and result in super-slow internet speeds, or even no connection at all.
Fortunately, most people who face this kind of problem can quickly solve it without any technological know-how. You just need to figure out which obstruction is causing the “blockage” and move your modem or router to an ideal place.
Upgrade your router.
If your router has been around for several years, there’s a good chance it’s time for an upgrade and you have to replace it completely. Most internet service providers offer just basic routers to their clients, probably in hopes that clients think the speed isn’t enough and instantly upgrade to a faster (and often more expensive plan).
In most cases, the speed of your internet could be due to outdated hardware. A more advanced modem or router would have newer technologies and firmware, which usually aims to speed up the connections.
As such, investing in a newer router could be your solution.
Install wifi booster or extender.
If you already have up-to-date routers and modems, plus no amount of moving-the-router around has helped in improving internet speed, maybe you’re experiencing dead zones.
When a particular spot in an area has zero internet (or very slow connections), that spot may not be fully reached by signals coming from your router. A wifi booster or extender’s job is to extend the signals to hard-to-reach areas like these dead zones.
Wifi boosters and extenders are perfect for attics, garages, backyards, and other areas that weren’t originally part of your “internet plan.” Maybe when you had your internet installed, you didn’t check if your third room in the basement had connectivity, and was only made aware of the fact when you were converting it into a home office.
Schedule internet use.
Some households have very high demands that even if they already have a good internet plan, they still experience spotty speeds during peak hours. When you find a pattern, such as 8 am to 1 pm “heavy traffic” at home, maybe you could schedule internet use at home.
Of course, this would only work if some people at home aren’t doing anything important. For example, your college kid doing online classes requires access to Adobe cloud the whole afternoon, while your office Zoom meetings are always in the mornings, you could give way to the person who needs connectivity the most.
This technique isn’t suitable for every household, since some may be using the internet for equally important things.
Ask ISP’s help.
If you are unable to troubleshoot your internet speed problem, maybe it’s time to ask for help from professionals. The internet service provider would check three things:
- Your end – Check cables, the routers and modems, and more. They might ask you to restart everything, fix cables, and even check the hardware’s lights.
- Their end – Sometimes, the problem is with the ISPs. They would most likely just update you once they’ve fixed it on their end and not really expand on what happened.
- A third-party’s end – In cases where your ISP still has a third-party provider that takes care of connection-related services, you’d be out of the loop and your ISP would just update you of the development.
Update your internet plan.
In some cases, it isn’t your fault or your ISP’s fault your internet speed isn’t good enough. Maybe your household’s requirements have actually surpassed the original plan you bought. If this is the case, your only options are to schedule your internet usage as a household or have the internet plan upgraded to reflect your current needs.
You don’t need to do all these things if you’re not happy with your internet speed. But you’d be surprised that some of them might actually work.