Upgrade Your Wireless Network Speed

By Eric Geier | Posted August 31, 2009

It has been about 10 years since the first widely-accepted Wi-Fi products hit the shelves. Since then we've seen a steady increase in the speed of wireless networking gear, from 11 Mbps with wireless "b", to 54 Mbps with wireless "g", and 100+ Mbps with wireless "n".

Plus there's been other improvements, including the antenna technology called multiple-in-multiple-out (MIMO) used in most wireless n gear to help extend the range.

If you're using an old Wi-Fi standard, like b or g, you might be noticing your wireless getting slower, video streams getting choppy, and connections dropping. It probably doesn't mean your equipment is malfunctioning or actually getting slower. It just means that your old gear can't keep up with the newer, higher demanding, applications.

You or others in the home or office might be downloading files or music more frequently, be an avid YouTube watcher, an online gamer, or a regular Skype or VoIP talker. You might not have done as much with your network back years ago when you installed it.

The simple fact of adding more computers or users on the network can also show the age in your wireless infrastructure.

Though it might take some money and time, you can bring your Wi-Fi network back up to speed. We'll discuss a few different solutions. But before you lay down any more money, we'll check to see if there's anything wrong with your current set up.

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