(Graphic | Courtesy of TDS Communications)
In 2022, a reliable internet connection is as crucial as ever to maintain productivity. When you consider the increasingly common hybrid work environment, the importance of fast, reliable business internet also extends to the home.
Whether you work in the office, at home — or some combination of the two — here are five things you can do to make sure you’re getting the most out of your internet and Wi-Fi services!
Run an online speed test with BendBroadband
If you’re experiencing network issues, start by running a real-time, online BendBroadband speed test.
Running a speed test will measure your network connection and show you the device’s upload and download speeds, the “ping” (how fast you get a response after you’ve sent out a request), and the network “jitter” (the variation in time between when a signal is transmitted and when it’s received over a network connection). Since the test is real-time, you can get different results within a two- to three-minute period, so it’s worth testing multiple times for the most accurate results.
Consider your hardware
It’s worth noting that several different factors can impact your speed test results.
Devices (phones, tablets, PCs, etc.) can have very different Wi-Fi and wireless radio capabilities, leading to far different results on the same network. Some devices may not be able to measure the full speed of the internet service you’re subscribed to. For laptops, it’s especially important to check and see that your device’s Network Interference Card (NIC) can support the speed of the service you’re subscribed to. If you work from home, it’s also possible that your Wi-Fi router doesn’t support the full capabilities of the network.
Using a laptop connected to Wi-Fi may seem like the ideal way to run a speed test — especially if that’s how you use the device on a daily basis. However, using a device connected via Wi-Fi is not an accurate test of your network performance, as the speed may be hindered by your device’s radio capabilities. We recommend connecting your laptop via ethernet to ensure the most accurate network performance results.
It’s also worth noting that the use of a virtual private network (VPN) can slow down your speeds. Many employers use VPNs as an added security measure to establish a protected network connection for their employees working on different wireless networks. However, a VPNs encryption process, the distance to the server and the VPN protocol used can slow down your speeds. For this reason, you should also run the test on another laptop not connected to a VPN.
Fix your Wi-Fi signal
In many cases, slow speeds are the result of the Wi-Fi signal, not the internet speed.
Distance from the router and environmental factors in a workspace like concrete walls, metal, mirrors, microwaves and even fish tanks can weaken a wireless connection. One easy way to solve the issue is by moving the router to a central location or adopting a Wi-Fi mesh technology (more on this later).
Keep your IT security updated
Rogue software and viruses can have many impacts on your computer system, including slow internet speeds. Crooks are continuously unleashing new and more dangerous threats online, attacking the internet-enabled devices your business uses. For this reason, it is important to always keep your IT security up to date.
TDS’ business internet security, online protection and support packages can help keep you safe! BendBroadband Internet Security for Business allows you to:
- Prevent dangerous attacks. Protect your devices from malware and ransomware by blocking access to harmful websites and warning users about malicious links.
- Manage devices remotely. The MyAccount management portal allows administrators to easily protect employee devices, send installation links and reminders, and add new users or devices.
- Safeguard financial transactions. Banking Protection blocks unwanted connections and man-in-the-middle attacks to give you peace of mind while banking or shopping online.
Consider adopting Wi-Fi mesh technology
If moving your router doesn’t work, it may be worth considering a Wi-Fi mesh system with multiple access points for consistent coverage, like TDS Wi-Fi+ for Business or the residential product, TDS Wi-Fi+. Our Wi-Fi+ solutions accommodate the individual needs of your workspace through the strategic placement of several eero access points, which could be equipped with tri-band radios to maximize traffic. These access points communicate with each other and hand off traffic, ensuring consistent coverage throughout your business or home workspace.