Does your office have problems with its internet connection? Do you find yourself experiencing slow speeds and unreasonable downtime? There’s a good chance that the internet itself isn’t the problem. Instead, you might have a problem with the hardware that broadcasts the internet through your office.
If you’ve been experiencing issues with the internet connection in your office, keep reading to find out what could be causing the issues, and to learn about some helpful tips to bulletproof your internet connectivity.
Office Internet Is Different To Home Internet
Full-suite IT departments are an expensive investment for a business, especially small businesses with few demanding technological needs. Many people believe that their office internet should be just as easy to set up as their home internet. It’s common to buy internet hardware at your office store, set it up in your office, and think you’re good to go.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t work in practice. There are a number of possible security issues at play here. Also, hardware made for home networking is specifically designed for homes for a reason. It’s not built to withstand the needs of commercial use. There can also be further complications if you have an office on multiple floors of a building or a thick-walled office that tries to pipe its WiFi through bricks.
Problems With Office Internet
Spotty office connectivity and weak signals are the most common networking issues you’ll find in an office. Multiple types of devices aim to solve this problem. It’s common for an environment to use repeaters and range extenders, but these aren’t necessarily the best solution. In fact, they can cause further harm to your network.
There are two main problems with repeaters and range extenders. The first problem is that they cause further latency. If a signal goes through multiple points before reaching its destination, that signal will be slower than if it had jumped immediately from the first to last point.
The second problem is regarding the way a device connects to its network. If a device connects to the network for the first time, especially a wireless network, the network information is saved to allow the device to make an automatic connection again. This is the reason that you can use your office WiFi on your phone without needing to manually switch over from your home WiFi network.
Issues With Repeaters
If a repeater is used, two sources are broadcasting the exact same networking information. When your device attempts to connect to this network, it will choose whichever device is giving off the best signal strength. But wireless signals aren’t consistent. A signal can be disrupted due to its usage, power fluctuations, and other factors. When the signal fluctuates, your device will then attempt to switch to the other network source. This automatic switching causes problems with latency and overall connection stability.
Is Your Office WiFi Too Cluttered?
Another problem you might face is a cluttered signal. Wireless signals use channels to communicate, and the number of channels available is limited. The FCC designates the channels that a wireless connection can legally use. If you’re in a crowded space, in which multiple offices or homes are broadcasting their own wireless signals, you might end up with an unclear signal of your own. When a number of competing signals are overlapping in one area, you might experience interference that slows your networking capability.
How to Solve Office Connectivity Problems
Your best solution for bulletproof office internet is to use a string of ethernet cables. The ethernet cables should move from your network source to specified office areas. Hardwired solutions like this are far more reliable than a wireless solution. In each location of your office, you can create wireless access points that broadcast your signal locally. You can determine the best location of these points by having a wireless site survey done.
That said, it’s not always possible to run a hard-wired connection through your entire office space. If you’re in an older office park, for example, you might not be able to run a cable through the building’s walls. It’s possible that you’ll be able to move the cables underneath the floor or above your ceiling, but you’ll have to make sure you’re adhering to fire code standards.
One thing you don’t want to do is run your cables through the open. This is considered both unprofessional and hazardous, as people might trip on the exposed wiring. If you run conduits along the walls above a person’s eye level, you mitigate the trip hazard. But this solution won’t always work.
Even when you use a hard-wired solution, you’ll need to do a little extra work to make your connection viable. It isn’t possible to plug every single one of your access points into the same router. At the very least, you will need to use an ethernet switch that can accept and pass traffic from about a hundred distinct connections. If you have concerns about the security of your business, you might want to invest in a hardware firewall as well. Firewalls are more of a security concern than a connectivity concern.
When you do research on the potential solutions to your connectivity problems, you should keep in mind that the majority of solutions are meant for residential people. If you just need to increase the connection to a child’s bedroom, for example, then a wireless repeater would suit you just fine. Make sure that you’re looking into solutions that specifically deal with commercial businesses.
In some circumstances, you might be able to use power line broadcasting. But that’s not an ideal commercial solution. At best, this is one piece of a larger network connectivity repair solution. You should be willing to invest in high-quality network hardware for your office space. You should also be willing to commission a survey of your office site so that you understand your basic networking needs. Make sure that you plan your connectivity sites before you set up your network or replace it.
For more information about how to secure a reliable internet connection, call Big Internet at 844-518-7508 or contact us here.