How to optimize and increase WiFi speeds in 8 simple steps
You can increase WiFi speeds by moving your router, power cycling your equipment, securing your WiFi, upgrading to a faster internet connection, using the latest WiFi technologies, replacing your equipment, updating your firmware, or getting a WiFi extender.
What you’ll learn:
- What slows down your WiFi
- Steps to improve your internet speed:
- Video quick tips and frequently asked questions
- Create your perfect internet plan
Many factors influence your network’s performance.
Your internet speeds can suffer for numerous reasons if you have a busy household with multiple people using several wireless devices over WiFi.
Slow internet speeds are frustrating if you work from home and your needs include video conferencing, heavy data uploads and downloads, or if you enjoy streaming videos or gaming at the end of your day.
However, you can actually increase and improve your WiFi speeds.
In this article we’ll discuss several ways to maximize your internet’s speed potential along with how to troubleshoot potential connection issues.
Why is my WiFi slow?
Many factors can influence your internet speed and affect your WiFi network’s performance, even with Gig speed internet, such as the following:
WiFi interference could be slowing down your internet.
The further the signal has to go, or the more it has to travel through and around, the slower the speeds will be.
Physical barriers like walls or appliances and the number of devices connected will all slow down WiFi speed.
If your router is old, too slow, or just not designed for faster connections, you may experience slower-than-normal upload and download speeds.
Certain older year models of modems and routers are not capable of delivering gigabit+ speeds.
In addition, your modem could cause connection issues with your service provider if it’s at the end of its life.
It could be time to consider updating your technology to the latest and greatest products and services available.
Learn More: Astound compatible modems and routers
Devices that can’t support the fastest speeds
Some devices can’t support faster speeds.
To see what speeds your device can support, check the owner’s manual or perform a web search using the device’s model number.
It is also possible that your equipment operates with obsolete drivers or firmware.
Drivers and firmware help your devices make WiFi connections.
It’s the software embedded within your devices, including your router and modem, that ensures they are secure and operating at their peak performance.
So outdated firmware can cause your router or modem to slow down your internet speeds.
Viruses or malware
Firewalls, antivirus software, and virtual private networks (VPN) can cause interference on your network.
Firewalls or antivirus programs on your computer or smartphone can slow down connection speeds—because they’re constantly scanning data for malware or viruses before letting data through.
A VPN encrypts data to protect your privacy, which can also slow speeds.
Learn More: 6 Internet Security Tips To Keep You Secure
Test your internet speed
It’s easy to assume that your internet connection is operating at its peak.
However, this isn’t always the case.
Testing your internet speeds can identify whether or not there is an issue with how fast data is moving on the network or if there are problems with specific devices.
Testing your will help determine whether you’re getting the most out of your internet package or if you need to upgrade your service to increase and improve speed.
Inadequate speed for your usage
How to improve your internet speed
After you troubleshoot potential speed hiccups and proactively test internet speeds throughout your home network, you can follow these easy tips to optimize and increase WiFi speeds.
1. Move your router
The first thing you can do to improve your internet speed is to move your router.
If your router isn’t in the right location, the signal might not be strong enough to reach all corners of your home or could cause WiFi interference.
Placing the router in an enclosed space will reduce the wireless range of your network, which can slow down your connections.
Instead, give your router the best seat in the house to optimize its performance:
- Place your router in a central location up off the floor in an open space
- Keep your router away from windows, other electronics, heat sources, moisture, extreme cold, or large metal objects
- It’s best to have your router on the main floor where the Internet is frequently accessed, not in a basement or attic
2. Power cycle your equipment
Power cycling your modem means turning it off along with all connected devices, waiting 30 seconds, and then turning everything back on again.
When you restart your WiFi equipment regularly, it ensures that there are no problems with any hardware, such as overheating routers or dropped connections from faulty cables.
This also refreshes the relationship between the devices in your network, giving you the following benefits:
- Reduced latency: A connection refresh can minimize the delay between devices on your home network or over a wide area network
- Improved reliability: Many devices perform embedded software updates for bugfixes and increased security to ensure dependability
- Increased performance: Resetting connections can enhance the features within a device to optimize performance
3. Secure your WiFi
Remember, all devices share your connection speed within your home network.
If your neighbors are using your WiFi, they’re using your bandwidth, too.
Require a password to join your network so that you can protect your connection from malicious cyber attacks or neighbors adding their devices to your broadband.
If any device becomes infected with a virus or malware, it can slow down your connection.
When you run regular virus scans to keep your devices clean of viruses and malware, it will improve your speed.
4. Upgrade to faster internet
To ensure access to the fastest internet and WiFi speeds, you can upgrade to fiber internet and purchase gig internet speeds.
Fiber internet transmits data through fiber optic cables.
It’s the fastest and most reliable form of internet available.
Gigabit+ speeds (1200 Mbps, 1500 Mbps, or 2000 Mbps) are much faster than cable or DSL.
Fiber optic technologies are capable of delivering these speeds to your home.
If you live in an area where fiber internet is available, upgrading to faster internet will improve your service and provide you with multiple benefits.
Benefits of high speed internet include:
- Quick download speeds
- Fast upload times
- Reduced buffering or dropped connections
- More reliable connections for video conferencing and live streams
- Better support for multiple users on the same WiFi network
- Optimized speed for gaming
If you don’t have access to fiber or don’t have the option to upgrade, there are still ways you can get faster speeds.
5. Use the latest WiFi technologies
One way to increase your WiFi speed is to access the next generation of WiFi offering more speed, better range, more capacity, and improved security features.
WiFi 6 and WiFi 6e are the latest versions of WiFi. The “e” stands for enhanced, which includes backward compatibility with older wireless networks.
The latest WiFi 6 version provides longer ranges, so you can be farther away from your router and still get a signal.
You won’t see much difference in this area however if you’re using legacy hardware, so upgrading your router and updating other devices will become important.
WiFi 6 has twice as much capacity as its predecessor (802.11ac), which means you can connect more devices simultaneously without causing congestion or interference issues.
This feature is essential when you want to maintain peak performance for any one device within your network.
6. Replace your equipment
Upgrading your equipment to boost and support higher WiFi speeds is the best way to ensure you have access to the latest technology.
Your router is the gateway to your home network and is responsible for sending out information to all your connected devices.
Outdated equipment can slow down other devices connected to your network because older devices may not support access to optimized speeds.
To see what speeds your device can get, check the owner’s manual or perform a web search using its model number.
Mesh WiFi system
Whole Home WiFi uses TrueMesh technology to provide faster, reliable WiFi throughout your entire home.
It enables multiple WiFi access points (eeros) for all your smart home devices and lets you move from room to room and stay connected.
A gaming router can help manage internet traffic to increase and improve your network bandwidth through its quality of Service (QoS) features.
Updating to a more powerful gaming router will provide you with more ports and channel options to improve speed.
It also allows you to connect multiple devices to your network and optimize bandwidth capacity.
Learn More: How To Setup Your WiFi Router For Gaming
7. Update your firmware
Typically, the main reason to update your firmware is to minimize security issues and avoid vulnerability from viruses, malware, and hackers that will reduce your internet speeds.
Updating the firmware to fix bugs, enhance features and improve software performance will help increase your internet speeds.
When you buy a new router or modem, it has the latest firmware installed.
But over time, manufacturers continue to release updates to their firmware, which means your current version may need to be optimized for today’s technology.
Therefore if you update your firmware regularly, you’ll maintain high speeds and improve the stability of your devices.
8. Get a WiFi extender
Use a WiFi extender to increase the range of your wireless network.
Test your router speeds in various locations to look for dead zones or weak connection areas within your network.
Poor signal strength in certain parts of your home or office can reduce your internet performance.
A WiFi extender can do the trick if you have taken the time to troubleshoot all potential issues that can slow down internet speeds and exhaust all options to improve your connection.
Ensure the WiFi extender is within range of your main router and that no physical objects interfere between the router and the extender.
This will help extend the range of your wireless network and provide better coverage throughout your home or office.
Video Quick Tips
Improving WiFi in your home
Find out what you can do to boost and maximize your WiFi speed.
Wired vs. Wireless
Learn the benefits of a wired Internet connection and the differences when going wireless.
Securing your wireless connection and choosing the right browser helps improve your WiFi experience.
Frequently asked questions
Why am I not getting advertised speeds on my WiFi network?
Astound Broadband Internet advertised speeds are based upon a direct connection to the modem. Actual wireless performance will vary, and depends on many factors, including interference with other wireless devices, the amount of bandwidth others are using on your WiFi network and obstructions such as walls, doors, floors, furniture, fish tanks, appliances and other objects that are between you and the wireless router. Some devices cannot support today’s speeds which slows down WiFi for all other devices in the home. Most routers will slow down to the speed of your slowest device
How can I make my WiFi faster?
You can improve your WiFi speeds by:
- Ensuring your WiFi router is placed in a location closest to the devices in use, with minimal to no WiFi interference
- Optimizing your device for the best connection speeds possible by ensuring your devices are free of viruses and malware and updating devices with the most recent firmware
- Update your internet plan to obtain high speed access
Will a new router increase my internet speed?
It depends. If you’re using a Data Over Cable Systems Interface Specification (DOCSIS) 2.0 or older modem and WiFi router than upgrading to a DOCSIS 3.0 or higher equipment (modem, router, gateway) may increase your internet speed as it allows for a much higher maximum throughput of data. A higher throughput may lead to faster download speeds. DOCSIS 4.0 is the latest DOCSIS technology available, which includes advanced performance-enhancing features that are not available on DOCSIS 1.0, 1.1, 2.0, or 3.0 devices.
How do I know if I need a faster internet plan?
If your needs include any of the following you’re likely to benefit from a high speed internet plan.
- Heavy streaming of videos, either for entertainment or to conduct video calls for work or school
- Uploading and downloading large amounts of data
- Competitive gaming
Check for service to see if Astound internet is available in your area.
*Internet download speeds may vary and are not guaranteed. Certain equipment may be required to receive advertised speeds. Observed speeds may vary based on device connection & other factors outside of Astound’s control. All advertised speeds are up to the stated speeds and are not guaranteed; speed may vary due to conditions outside of network control, including customer location, sites accessed, number of devices connected, customer usage, customer equipment and computer configuration, the level of overall traffic, and customer compliance with Astound usage policies set forth in the acceptable usage policy. See astound.com/yourspeed for why speeds may vary. Our FCC Network Management Disclosure makes available information regarding our network management practices and the performance and commercial terms of our Internet access services to enable you to make informed choices regarding the purchase and use of our services, in accordance with Part 8 of the Rules of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Modem required for internet service. We substantiate that the cable modem equipment provided, and the configuration of such cable modem, meets the broadband speeds advertised when attached to a wired connection based on SamKnows testing procedures.
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