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Improving Internet performance when working from home

by Fred Miller on 2020-03-20T06:54:59-04:00 | Comments

Working remotely? Understanding your Internet connection capacity is an important component to a successful remote work experience. 

Weak Wi-Fi signal or a slow broadband Internet provider -- meaning less than 10 Mb/s download speeds, 4 Mb/s upload speed, or high latency -- can make it difficult to work remotely. Next to the Internet provider you use, the most important factor is how you connect to the network within a house or other location. Three things to consider:

  • The quality of your Wi-Fi connection will impact your overall Internet quality. Avoid having two or more walls, or one floor, between your computer and your home internet router/access point. 
  • Wi-Fi signals are transmitted at two different frequencies: 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. The 2.4 GHz frequency is an older technology, is more prone to interference, and runs at slower speeds. For best results, make sure your computer is using 5 GHz Wi-Fi.
  • If possible, connect direct to the internet router or access point via a wired (Ethernet) cable.

You can test the quality of your Internet connection with the free speedtest.net website or iOS/Android app. This provides an end-to-end test of the factors affecting your connection: your internet provider, your home network setup, and the device you’re on. For best results, you’ll want:

  • 10 megabit per second (Mb/s) or better download speed 
  • 4 megabit per second (Mb/s) or better upload speed 
  • A ‘ping time’ of less than 75 milliseconds

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