Ask the million-dollar question: "Is there Wi-Fi here?" and then wait with baited breath.
It's no laughing matter; Wi-Fi has become a crucial element in our everyday lives. So much so, that it's being made available underground in subway stations and, slowly but surely, up in the sky. We simply can't live without our invisible security blanket.
Given our reliance on wireless networking technology, it's extremely frustrating when your Wi-Fi is weak or lagging. A page won't load, the stream keeps freezing or your WhatsApp call gets dropped, Wi-Fi headaches are all too real. But most of the time, the solutions are simple.
In partnership with Bell and their latest Wi-Fi technology, here are some of the most common reasons your Wi-Fi signal is lacking and how to fix the hiccup.
YOU'RE TOO FAR AWAY
So your Wi-Fi sucks. Before you start unplugging wires or dismantling your Internet set-up, try simply moving your device closer to your modem and router. You may just be too far from where the signal is emanating. Larger homes with multiple levels may require a mesh network so that you get a strong signal no matter where you are in the house.
Wi-Fi isn't something we can physically see or hold, but it can certainly be blocked by physical objects. Walls and shelving are some of the most common reasons your signal is lagging. Modems aren't the most attractive interior design statement but they shouldn't be stored away in a cabinet or box.
Walls are also a nemesis to a strong signal. Materials like concrete and plaster make it harder for Wi-Fi to travel to its destination. The best place for your router is usually somewhere central, open and elevated.
YOUR ROUTER IS OUTDATED
Your cellphone isn't the only device that needs a regular upgrade: so does your router. Today, everything from phones to thermostats rely on Wi-Fi, and newer routers are designed to cope with the high demands of multiple devices. They also combat connectivity issues like signal interference (from your microwave, baby monitor, radio etc.) and are much better at following us as we move around.
Newer dual-band wireless routers are capable of running on the less crowded 5 GHz band and the 2.4 GHz band, taking advantage of both frequencies. The best example of this is Bell's Home Hub 3000, which uses Tri-band technology. Plus, Bell is the only provider to create a Whole Home Wi-Fi solution by using access points they call pods. These pods can be placed throughout your home to bring the fastest signal to every corner of your home.
WI-FI THIEVES ABOUND
Wi-Fi thieves are everywhere so don't discount your friendly neighbours. Perhaps you didn't feel the need to protect your Wi-Fi network or you simply forgot and now those in close proximity are taking advantage. The more people on your network, the slower it will be. Always add a password and make it a good one.
REBOOT & REFRESH
Sometimes the human body needs a reset to function at its best and so does your router and modem. It's good practice to give your electronics some R & R. A simple refresh can often solve any connectivity issues you've been experiencing. For best results, always reboot the router or modem first by unplugging it from the outlet and waiting 15-20 seconds before plugging it back in. Follow that up by restarting your device.
Don't let a subpar signal slow you down! Permanently rid yourself of Wi-Fi headaches with the new Bell Whole Home Wi-Fi.