On our Wavelength? How to Optimize Wi-Fi in your Workplace
Wi-Fi is used in our homes, offices, and even on flights and bus rides to provide internet access. It’s fair to say that without it, some of us would be pretty lost. Wi-Fi is the enabler and the invisible hero in a world where we expect to be connected, wherever we go. But have you ever stopped to think about how it works?
According to the Wi-Fi Alliance, “Wi-Fi is a technology that allows electronic devices to connect and communicate without wires”. Wi-Fi works by sending and receiving radio waves with the help of an antenna; these signals are then transmitted between devices as Wi-Fi data.
Where old technology thwarts new. Back away from the microwave!
Wi-Fi waves are mighty; they operate in the Gigahertz range of frequency, so while safe from AM and FM radio frequencies, their wavelength can be disrupted by other sources like microwaves or Bluetooth devices like wireless keyboards. In fact, Wi-Fi signals can be disrupted by anything that operates in the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz ranges. You might not think that rusty old microwave in the breakroom could affect your lunchtime Netflix session, but it’s just science.
Skip the aquarium
If your Chief Exec wants that ‘Finding Nemo’ ambience in the lobby, let them know that it could quickly become that lesser-known (and far worse received) hypothetical sequel ‘Searching for Signal’. Sadly, the plot doesn’t quite get off the ground because nobody can get online to look at their maps.
We’re probably overstating it a little here, but you get the point! Wi-Fi signals struggle to get through large bodies of water. Thick concrete walls, metal flooring and thick pillars can all interrupt signals.
How to get the best Wi-Fi experience in your organisation:
How do you optimise Wi-Fi in your office so that everyone has a quality connection to the internet? No matter where they are in the building, be it next to the microwave or the wrong side of an ill-conceived water feature.
The best way to mitigate these barriers is through a thorough site survey, which considers the nuances and requirements for your Wireless Connectivity. Do you need outdoor coverage? Are there tricky physical or notorious blackspots? Are there areas where it’s more challenging to place APs or where interference has been a problem in the past? The answers to these questions will inform the design of your wireless network and enable your provider to work out the investment in equipment and the plan that works best for your business. For example, you may need to invest in Wireless APs that support the 5Ghz range, which transmits data faster over short distances. Or, carefully consider the location of your APs for maximum coverage. Equally, it’s crucial to invest in the latest software to ensure the quality of service through automatic app prioritisation.
Our team of experts can design a Wi-Fi solution that uses the latest, futureproofed Wi-Fi technologies and supports hard-to-reach locations, data-hungry applications and areas with higher numbers of users.
What’s next for Wi-Fi technology?
Wi-Fi is a massive success story, the veritable Beatles of the digital world. With the global economic value of Wi-Fi expected to reach $5 trillion by 2025, this technology is going places, driven by our hunger for ubiquitous connectivity. The next generation of Wi-Fi promises to deliver even faster speeds and greater bandwidth than ever before. Wi-Fi 6 will meet growing demands on high-performance networks, including the capability to support VR and AR, which could be a game-changer for customer experience.
Need help with your Wi-Fi?