WiFi Internet Router Tips
The Streamers Networkby Steven Jimmy Docherty
We do all we can here to keep you informed on the best apps and devices and services to use to ensure you get the most enjoyment from your set up. WiFi or wireless Internet while easy, is not always the best solution for streaming.
No matter which device you are using or service you're using on that device, if you don't maintain your home network you can't be guaranteed to get the level of service you are paying your IP (Internet Provider) for. Gamers, this can also mean the difference between actively participating in a FPS match or waiting on the sidelines for the next round to start.
If there is one thing you should invest in if you have already made the effort to focus more on media streaming rather than a cable subscription, it's optimizing your network to handle the data traffic the best it can. I'm going to cover a few points to help you out a little and give you a little insight to my personal set up.
Simplified Router Basics
The WiFi Internet of your home network can struggle with just a handful of devices connected even more so if it's a stock wireless router from your Internet provider. If one or more of the devices are trying to stream it can cause degradation of the WiFi allocation to each device. Ultimately this can reduce your download speeds for all devices on your network. This can also make your video streams choppy and cause buffering issues. It’s much like having a device which can run off both batteries and mains power supply, you are always going to run better from the mains and the battery will have it’s limits.
I know using Ethernet has its limitations, although here are a few solutions to this that are fairly inexpensive. I have 2 main areas in my house where I'm dependant on the Internet and like most households; they are generally situated around a TV set. I know that some will decide to use a long Ethernet cable to bolster connectivity from the router to another room. Let's be honest this can be messy. For not much difference in price you have a much better solution at hand, "Powerline Adaptors” which I have been using for some time now.
Personally I am using these:
TP-Link TL-PA211KIT 200Mbps Mini Powerline Ethernet Adapter - Twin Pack
They are well brilliant and can also boost your speeds slightly and setting them up is pretty much plug in and play. If you are in a large house, you can always add more to your existing pair in other rooms and just sync them. This is very easy to do as they have a sync button included on them just for that.
So I know what you’re thinking, "that's great but that's only going to work with one device”. Well this is true, although another great piece of kit I use attached to the Powerline adapter is a 5-Port Gigabit Unmanaged Desktop Switch. I know this sounds really complex and mind baffling so I will simplify it, basically it’s much like a multi socket extension only not for power wires rather for Ethernet cables. A Switch can also be used to add extra Ethernet ports to a single Ethernet wire.
TP-LINK TL-SG1005D 10/100/1000Mbps 5-Port Gigabit Desktop Switch, 10Gbps Capacity
One Last WiFi Internet Router Tip
I wont go as far to say that if you take my advice here you will be gobsmacked at the difference in the performance of your Internet performance. This is how I'm set up and now the only issues I have with my Internet is… Sorry I can't think of anything.