Ofcom has launched an app that will let you know if your Wi-Fi is at fault in slowing down your home broadband experience. The app, which has been made available for Android and iOS, runs a series of performance tests and diagnostics then suggests broadband speed optimising tips.
As the video above explains, while there are lots of variables that can affect the broadband speeds achievable to their property, many boradband customers don't get the optimal speeds within their property. Ofcom estimates that "wireless broadband may not be working as well as it could in nearly six million UK homes and offices". That's about one in five Wi-Fi broadband connection setups. A major contributor to the suboptimal in-home speeds is down to interference from other electrical devices in your home.
The app looks for a significant drop in performance between your broadband connection and your home Wi-Fi network and puts forward recommendations depending upon its test results. Suggestions will include the following:
- Move your router away from electrical devices: Halogen lamps, electrical dimmer switches, stereo or computer speakers, fairy lights, TVs and monitors and AC power cords have all been known to cause interference to broadband routers. Keep your router as far away as possible from other electrical devices as well as those which emit wireless signals such as baby monitors etc.
- Move your router to a different part of your home: The walls and furniture in your house act as an obstacle to the Wi-Fi radio frequencies. Ideally routers should be kept centrally within the home and placed on a table or shelf rather than on the floor
- Try restarting your wireless router: This may automatically select a less busy Wi-Fi radio frequency.
- Use an Ethernet cable to connect directly to your router: An Ethernet cable is a computer networking cable which should give you a faster, more reliable connection.
For thorough testing Ofcom recommends you go through your house room to room, at different times of day – as there are so many variables in what could impede or interfere with a Wi-Fi connection.