Staying connected over WiFi

The Challenges Of WiFi Implementation

The speed and connectivity of your IT network architecture can affect the efficiency of your business, impacting on employee productivity, the quality of service delivery and ultimately your reputation. When this network is serviced by WiFi connections, the speed delivered by these connections, in combination with the broadband speed being delivered by your broadband provider, may not reflect what you require and will limit capacity to a level that affects your business; and if you provide a public service you could also be suffering from customer complaints.

This is because the range and speed of the WiFi connections within your business can be hampered by a number of factors; from WiFi bandwidth congestion to an ineffective or a non-optimised hardware installation.

Understanding WiFi Channels

Wireless connectivity uses standardised equipment conforming to agreed specifications laid out by the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) 802.11 working group; and is split between two frequency bands. In Europe, and therefore here in the UK, the legal spectrum available for use sits in two ranges at 2.4GHz and 5GHz. The first introduction of wireless communication came in 1997 with the development of the 802.11 standard, using the 2.4GHz frequency range, and from this point there has been a continual evolution of the technology to improve its reliability and the bandwidths being offered. The introduction of the 802.11n standard, in 2009, brought about the additional use of the 5GHz frequency range and provided users the ability to communicate wirelessly at speeds of between 54Mbps and 600Mbps (megabits per second).

The 2.4 GHz band is split into 13 legal channels in the UK, although others exist that are not permitted for use. Due to the fact that these channels overlap care must be taken when installing a large network using this range. There are only 3 discrete channels, channels 1, 6 and 11, and it is common for most wireless equipment to use one of these three by default.

Optimising WiFi Installation

There has been an explosion in the use of wireless communication over the last 5 years or so, and it’s not just in typical heavy use areas, such as central London, that the 2.4GHz band is becoming congested; affecting the performance of your wireless network.  Having the knowledge and ability to find the right channel can make a real difference.

Further to channel optimisation, we are able to use our expertise to analyse the network architecture to find ways to improve the capability and range of your wireless network.

We find that a half day consultation allows the appropriate time to perform this analysis and make recommendations.

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