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Working from home? Can the internet handle it

With many people working from home to reduce face-to-face interaction, the importance of internet connection has become more critical than ever. Especially with the significant rise in the use of children accessing streaming services such as Netflix, as well as students accessing online learning platforms can the internet handle it.

Thankfully, internet providers have stated that the broadband network has the capacity to allow for the increases during these uncertain times.

Here is a list we have compiled with some handy tech tips on how to survive and thrive while working from home.

 

Boost your speed

The two most effective moves are to limit the number of devices connected to your wifi and to reduce the distance between your computer and your router. Make sure the modem is not buried in a bookcase, If you can see it, you can get a better signal. And try to work in the same room as the wifi. Another option would be to plug your laptop directly into your router using an old-fashioned Ethernet cable. A direct-wired connection between your router and devices via an RJ45 cable will always be faster. Buy a high-speed data cable telephone cable to go from your router to the telephone socket.

 

Routers/Mesh and PCs

“Mesh” networks and routers are transmitters that can extend the reach of your wifi signal. Depending on the brand, design and the number of devices it can connect, a mesh router can cost anything between €45 and €150, and you can order one online — if you have an internet connection.

 

Broadband overload

The best thing to do is to switch off the devices you don’t need. Even devices that you are not using, such as tablets or CCTV cameras, can affect broadband speed. While the amount of data they consume may be limited, it all adds up.

If your speed seems slower than usual, a simple router reboot — turning it off and on again — can often solve the problem. A router is a tiny computer that can get overloaded, overheat or crash completely, but will normally come back to life after a reboot.

 

Conference calls and films

Avoid holding your important work video conference while someone else in your family is downloading a film. If you have a slow connection during a video conference, turn off the video and use only the audio, which uses a lot less bandwidth. You can also use dial-in audio (using your phone), rather than your PC if you don’t need to see what’s going on during the conference.

If you’re planning to watch a film in the evening try to download it during the day when the network is less busy.

 

Use your mobile

Most phones now offer a personal hotspot, which turns your mobile phone into a small router. Using your 4G hotspot consumes data, so don’t use it to watch HD films on streaming or for long video calls.

 

Microwaves

There are devices in your home that could interfere with your wifi signal because they use the same frequency. These may include old microwaves, but it’s most likely that gadgets that are connected via Bluetooth — such as speakers, headsets and baby monitors — will be the biggest culprits.

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