UK regulator Ofcom comes out with phone app to check WiFi signal strength

Though we at What’s New On The Net normally do not report on hardware but since this concerns a vexed problem almost all of us face, here goes….

UK’s communication regulator Ofcom has launched an app called ‘Wi-Fi Checker’, which runs on smartphones & Tablets, allows consumers & businesses to discover the quality of their wireless Internet signal wherever they live or work – as well as offering practical steps to help people get the best from their connection.

Ofcom said wireless broadband may not be working as well as it could in nearly 6 million UK homes & offices, according to a research report published today. This, it claimed, was often caused by the WiFi set-up in the house slowing down broadband. It could be down to something as simple as interference from other electronic devices, such as a microwave oven, baby monitor, a lamp – or even Christmas fairy lights.

Here are some of the troubleshooting tips put out by Ofcom:

For example, it may suggest you to:

  • Move your router away from electrical devices: Halogen lamps, electrical dimmer switches, stereo or computer speakers, fairy lights, TVs & 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 & furniture in your house act as an obstacle to the WiFi radio frequencies. Ideally routers should be kept centrally within the home & placed on a table or shelf rather than on the floor.
  • Try restarting your wireless router: This may automatically select a less busy WiFi 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.
  • WiFi performance can be affected by lots of things. These can change over time and have a different effect in different rooms of your house. We recommend you try running the WiFi Checker in different rooms and at the times of day when you’re most likely to use the Internet.

Check out this video:

The new app is available for both, Android & iOS.




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