How To Get Faster Wifi On Laptop – Slow Wi-Fi can interfere with Zoom meetings, wreak havoc in the online world, and prevent your video stream from buffering. When your world depends on near-instant connectivity, these little annoyances add up quickly and become frustrating interruptions at work, school, and life in general.
Go to: Turn things off and on | Move your router | Adjust your router’s antennas | Go to the right band Read Unnecessary Connection | Change your Wi-Fi channel | Update your router’s firmware | Change your device | Expand your Wi-Fi network Upgrade to faster internet
How To Get Faster Wifi On Laptop
Before you get started, download our free speed test app and take a quick test. It’s not part of our official list of ten things, but it’s good for context. Use your first speed test result as a baseline and compare the results as you go through each step—that way, you’ll know if you’re helping.
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You can also compare the results with the maximum speed advertised with your internet plan. That way, you’ll know if your speed is actually underperforming or if it’s time to upgrade to a faster plan.
Keep in mind, many ISPs only guarantee speeds on wired Ethernet connections. It’s perfectly acceptable, although somewhat expected, to have numbers lower than your advertised maximum speed, especially on Wi-Fi. What is important is that you have an easy browsing experience.
If your speeds are close to where they should be, but you find yourself with slow internet, you may be outgrowing your current connection and need a faster internet plan.
Before you get started, take our internet speed test. It’s not part of our official list of ten things, but it’s good for context. Use your first speed test result as a baseline and compare the results as you go through each step—that way, you’ll know if you’re helping.
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Use how much of our speed do you need? A tool to see if you need more speed than your current plan. If so, enter your zip code below to find the fastest plans in your area.
Unplug your modem or wireless gateway, wait 30 seconds, and then plug it back in. This process allows the modem to eliminate any malfunctions.
Your modem translates Internet signals between your home network and your Internet provider. If your internet is working, a power cycle is a good place to start troubleshooting, as it fixes most connection problems.
Next, repeat the process if you have a standalone router. Like a modem, a power cycle clears your router’s memory and gives it a fresh start on tasks it was finishing before.
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Finally, turn off Wi-Fi on all your wireless devices. Wait a few seconds and then turn Wi-Fi back on. Let these devices reconnect and see if your connection improves.
Power cycling may seem simple, but turning your home network equipment off and on again can give your network a boost. We recommend that you reboot your device regularly – at least once every few months. But keep in mind that doing so will leave you without internet for a few minutes, so plan to restart your device when no one needs an internet connection.
Wi-Fi can only travel so far, and its signals can be interfered with or blocked by walls, floors, ceilings, furniture, appliances, and basically any large physical object. These signals can also interfere with radio waves from other devices, including cordless phones, baby monitors, microwaves, and Bluetooth speakers.
So if you put your router at one end of your home space, you might have a problem with Wi-Fi at the other end. The best place for your router is in a central and elevated location, close to where you use the Internet most often. Don’t relegate your router to the basement or closet—that’s just for troubleshooting yourself.
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Modern routers operate primarily on two radio frequency bands: 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. The band you use for your connection can affect your speed and the quality of your connection at different distances from your router.
Whatever frequency band you are on you are experiencing some temporary interference, so try switching to another band. It appears as a different Wi-Fi network on your device, usually with a label in the network name that identifies the network as 2.4 Ghz or 5 Ghz.
The 2.4 GHz band is the most commonly accessed Wi-Fi connection. It is used for many wireless communications other than Wi-Fi, so the airways in this frequency can be a bit crowded. This band trades speed for range – meaning it’s better at going through walls and other objects – while 5 GHz has better speed but a shorter range.
The two frequency bands often appear as two separate Wi-Fi networks. To reorganize your connection, log out of the wrong band and connect to the correct one on each device.
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Many wireless routers and gateways have internal antennas—meaning they’re mounted inside the device, and you can’t adjust them. If this is the case for you, skip this step.
But if you have adjustable antennas on your router, try reconfiguring them. Router antennas are usually omnidirectional, which means they send signals in all directions perpendicular to the antenna. For example, a vertical antenna sends Wi-Fi signals horizontally and vice versa.
So if you need to extend your Wi-Fi signals to multiple floors, positioning the antenna horizontally to bounce Wi-Fi signals up and down can help.
If your router is in the best place but you still have speed or connection problems in certain areas of your home, you may need to add a device that can extend the range of your network.
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While all of these work to extend your Wi-Fi, the best one for your network depends on your home’s floor plan. If you only have a stubborn dead zone, a booster will probably be fine. Mesh systems are best for whole-home coverage if your home is particularly large or has a complex layout. And using an access point would be ideal if your home is wired with Ethernet.
If you are running out of bandwidth, you should remove all unused devices. Everything connected to your network should be essential.
The easiest way to remove unnecessary devices is to change your Wi-Fi password and restart your router. You will need to log into your network again with a new password on each device you currently use. This method will clean up all unnecessary connections, such as the emergency mobile phone you keep that is still silently downloading updates.
Your router may come with a home networking app like NETGEAR Genie, TP-Link Tether, or Xfinity xFi that can show you which devices are connected to your network. If you have such an app, you can easily find faulty connections and disconnect them without having to destroy your entire Wi-Fi network. Your router’s web interface should have a map of all your network devices.
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The 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands are divided into channels: 11 in the former and 45 in the latter. Most routers automatically select the best channels for you, but sometimes you have to change them manually.
Frequency channels can be crowded, so if you and all your neighbors use the same channel in the 2.4 GHz range, it can affect your Wi-Fi speed.
To find the best Wi-Fi channel, you can use the Wireless Diagnostics feature on a Mac computer—just hold down the Option key and click the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar corner at the top right of your screen. The scan window will list the best 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz channels available to you.
On Windows, you can use a command in Windows PowerShell to view all available channels or install an app such as NetSpot. These methods do not summarize the best channels for you but instead you need to determine the best channels by examining the scan results.
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To change your Wi-Fi to the best channel, you need to log into your router’s online interface. You can do this by typing your router’s IP address into a web browser and logging in. Once you’re logged in, browse your Wi-Fi settings. Your band should have the option to change the channel.
While we hope these tips work for you, sometimes your internet connection is too slow to continue your internet usage. If this is the case, you may need to upgrade to a faster internet plan to get better speeds.
Not sure what internet speed is needed to support your online habits? Check out our internet speed guide for online gaming and video streaming requirements.
And if you are worried because you have certainly paid enough for Internet speed but your connection still does not cut, it may be that your Internet connection is not always working at 100%.
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Internet providers advertise speeds up to a certain speed—they don’t promise you’ll always get those speeds. So even if you have a 100 Mbps plan, you won’t always have that much bandwidth. In this case, you may need some buffer or a plan that is actually faster than you think you will need. In this way, the lack of network remains
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