The eternal loading screens, no internet connection, and buffering audio and video aren't enough to bear when you have a slow Wi-Fi connection. In addition, it will take longer than usual to download files on your devices using the snail speed of your Wi-Fi internet. However, there are reasons behind your Wi-Fi being slow.
Wi-Fi offers wireless technology that allows multiple devices to connect to the internet over the air. Generally, a wireless router helps to create this Wi-Fi network but a few reasons can make it run slow. Especially, if your router cannot transmit signals to the devices far away from it, or if there are too many users connecting to it at the same time and your router may not have the same capacity for all of them. Also, if you have not updated your router in a while and it's too old, then it can create connection disruption.
There can be dozens of reasons behind your Wi-Fi being sluggish. In this article, you will not only be aware of these possible reasons but also be guided to avoid a slow Wi-Fi network. So, let's continue reading to learn more.
Downloading any files be they larger or smaller requires some of your internet bandwidth to process them efficiently and quickly. So, you may have a certain bandwidth limit provided by your internet service provider. But, when there are already two, or three people using the same Wi-Fi connection and sharing the bandwidth, you will face difficulty in downloading as only a little amount of bandwidth will be available for your use.
However, you may face difficulty in downloading files even when you have a stable internet connection with an ideal bandwidth limit. It can happen due to the range that it can cover, old models, weak antennae, malware infection, and a lot more.
Let's take a look at the possible reasons behind a slow download speed for your Wi-Fi:
Although there are several factors that may decide how far you should place your wireless router and enjoy a decent signal strength, yet like any other signal, it has only a limited range. If you are using a low-end router, then it will have weaker strength as it has only built-in internal antennas which are less powerful than the high-end routers.
High-end routers work with MIMO technology or also known as multiple-input and multiple-output technology, used for sending multiple data signals and receiving multiple data signals at the same time using the radio channel. This technology is often used with beamforming which is a signal processing technique, that allows directional transmission and reception of signals. So, if your router support beamforming technology then it can offer a higher transmission range without compromising on the speeds.
Despite having the greatest and latest technologies, it must be noted that your wireless device is still limited to a certain degree in terms of its range. These imitations become severe when you place a solid obstacle like a metal appliance on your router which further blocks its signals. So, overall, the range can play a huge factor in terms of slow downloading speed for your Wi-Fi.
If you are using a router older than nearly 4 years, then it won't provide you the optimal internet speed that it should. Especially, you need to be extra careful when your router or modem unit is provided by your internet service provider. It should be upgraded to the latest one to ensure it provides an optimal connection.
Generally, the older routers that were adopted back in 2003 used to support only 802.11g for implementing WLAN and it could operate at a maximum speed of 54Mbit per second. However, as technology improves, you now can enjoy 600Mbit per second of transmission speed with routers that support 802.11n for WLAN implementation. So, it would be pretty unreasonable to expect high-speed downloads with your old routers.
This is one of the most common reasons why you may be facing a slow download speed on your Wi-Fi connection. The speed provided by the Wi-Fi network can be split only up to a certain limit. For example, you can share your Wi-Fi connection of 100Mbps between three to four people at a maximum where each individual can enjoy a minimum of 25Mbps of speed. This is pretty decent when you want to download something.
However, if your network is too crowded. For example, if you are splitting your Wi-Fi network among ten people in your house, then it will affect your download speed. That being said, the total capacity of your router is still determined by your internet service provider and the type of specifications you are using for implementing WLAN. For example, if you are using fiber optic internet, then you can naturally enjoy a higher speed than any broadband service.
Yet, the problem that occurs with most Wi-Fi is that the signal is transmitted on different frequency ranges. Each of these frequency ranges is further divided into multiple channels. The problem occurs when these channels are overlapped with each other. Then, you will suffer a poor download speed on your Wi-Fi network.
Dealing with a slow internet speed is not fun anymore, especially in today's age where most of our daily work relies on the internet. A lot of people use Wi-Fi extenders to restore their download speed but there are a few more things you can implement to improve your network performance.
Let's take a look at the following ways to fix your Wi-Fi slowdown:
1. Find Better Channel For Your Wi-Fi
The Wi-Fi channels that are utilized most in a specific area can result in network disruption. This is why you should find out about these channels and avoid them. Now, find the most non-overlapping channel which is not used by any network yet. If you can find one, then enjoy the optimal download speed. If not, then try to find at least the second most non-overlapping channel to evade the slowdowns.
2. Turn Off Unnecessary Apps
A few apps that use the internet to stay active may take up most of the bandwidth and leave you with a little amount to process any downloads. So, you must kill these bandwidth hogs that are taking up all the bandwidth from your poor Wi-Fi. Also, sometimes a virus or malware can take advantage of your stable internet connection. So, install an antivirus to avoid such issues.
3. Switch Your Internet Service Provider
If you are experiencing slow Wi-Fi constantly then it might be your internet service provider that offering you a poor connection. To check, consider performing a speed test using the wired connection. Now, compare this result with the internet speed for which you're paying your ISP. If your speed is lower than usual, then consider switching to another ISP.
So, you have seen that there are reasons behind the slowdown of your Wi-Fi network. We also have mentioned the possible fixes that may work for you. It may help you optimize your network for the next time when you want to stream Netflix, download a game, or simply browse the web. Don't forget to keep the firmware of your routers up to date to avoid any slowdowns in the future. Do let us know if this guide has helped you fix your poor Wi-Fi speed.