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Optimizing Wi-Fi Performance: Best Practices For Faster Internet Speeds


Nothing annoys more than a slow home Wi-Fi network when you’re in the thick of something, let’s face it. You can’t stream a movie online or participate in online meetings if your Wi-Fi malfunctions.

It is more important than ever to optimize your Wi-Fi in light of the world’s rapid transition to digital technology. Reduced internet speeds mean we can’t actively stay connected, which has a significant negative impact on our output.

Statistics show that over 5 billion individuals utilize the internet worldwide. However, how many do so without experiencing the typical Wi-Fi bottlenecks, such as sluggish download speeds or even extremely slow page loading times?

This article discusses some potential causes behind slow internet speeds and how you can optimize your Wi-Fi for optimal performance.

Best Practices For Faster Internet Speeds

Let’s look at some measures you can take to ensure faster internet speeds in your home.

Improve your network security

Improve your Wi-Fi security measures to prevent bandwidth congestion caused by additional internet users. Lack of robust security, for example, securing routers with weak passwords and WPA2 protocols, may expose the Wi-Fi network to freeloaders. 

Remember that each connected device consumes bandwidth, and the influx of external devices utilizing your network diminishes the available bandwidth.  

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If your Wi-Fi doesn’t have a password, ensure you set one. It will lock out those using some of your allotted bandwidth, providing faster and better internet speeds. 

Close unnecessary tabs and applications when browsing

Some background applications and open tabs could be the major reason for slow internet speeds on your Mac.

To speed up your Mac’s slow internet, shut down all idle applications and browser tabs while turning off automatic updates for apps.  For instance, iCloud’s automatic syncing feature on Mac can impede internet speed due to its high bandwidth usage. 

Here are a few steps to turn off its automatic syncing on a Mac:

  1. Go to the Apple Menu
  2. Access System Preferences
  3. Open Apple ID 
  4. Navigate to iCloud
  5. Turn Off the iCloud Drive 
  6. Reset your Wi-Fi Settings.

Improving your internet speeds could be as simple as resetting the overall Wi-Fi settings on your device.  A simple Wi-Fi reset returns your Mac’s Wi-Fi setup and network preferences to their original factory settings.  

The only catch is that executing a network reset will erase all previously saved Wi-Fi networks from your Mac. Once you’ve reset your Wi-Fi settings, you’ll need to input the passwords again to reconnect to these networks.  

Follow these steps to reset your Wi-Fi settings on your Mac successfully:

  1. Go to System Preferences 
  2. Click on Network
  3. Select Wi-Fi on the left sidebar
  4. Proceed to click the minus (—) icon in the bottom-left corner
  5. Click Apply to remove the existing Wi-Fi interface.  This action also disconnects your Mac from any active wireless connection.
  6. From here, click the plus (+) icon and select Wi-Fi
  7. Click Create to continue and Apply to save the changes.

You can then reconnect to the network and test the connection speed.

Change the location of the router

Wi-Fi signals generally travel perpendicular to the router. If your router sits low on the ground, a considerable portion of the Wi-Fi signals will move horizontally along the floor, restricting their reach within your home.

Relocating your wireless router can significantly impact the signal strength of your Wi-Fi.  However, it’s crucial to avoid positioning it too close to obstructions. This includes materials like concrete or brick obstructing the router’s ability to distribute signals across your home.  

The denser the surrounding objects are, the more significant the signal loss tends to be.

Check for Malware 

Malware is malicious software installed on your Mac to collect crucial information, potentially harming other computers on the network. Some types of malware are annoying and may go to the lengths of causing a sluggish internet connection on your Mac. 

A malware-infected Mac tends to decelerate various processes, and you might encounter unexpected ad pop-ups while browsing. If you suspect malware presence on your Mac, consider conducting a thorough scan using reputable antivirus software. 

Once you’ve identified the malware, utilize the antivirus to remove the malicious software from your Mac, reset your web browser settings, and reboot your Mac system.

Set up or acquire a Wi-Fi Repeater 

Boosting internet speeds in specific areas of your house can be as easy as installing a Wi-Fi repeater. A repeater extends your Wi-Fi signal reach while maintaining the same SSID and password settings. 

It functions as a wireless router that captures your existing Wi-Fi signal. Another option is to mimic a repeater using an extra router. This is as simple as connecting a second router to the primary router through their LAN ports.  

Configure the settings accordingly and utilize the additional device to extend the wireless signal. 

Adjust your router’s antennas

While some routers have internal antennas, rendering them unadjustable, others feature adjustable antennas that offer room for configuration. If your router falls into the latter category, consider reconfiguring its antennas for potential signal enhancement.

Typically, router antennas are omnidirectional, emitting signals in all directions perpendicular to the antenna itself. For instance, a vertical antenna transmits Wi-Fi signals horizontally, and conversely, a horizontal positioning of the antenna spreads signals up and down.

To expand Wi-Fi coverage across multiple floors, adjusting an antenna horizontally could aid in spreading signals vertically. Alternatively, positioning the antenna vertically might be beneficial for broader coverage.

Consider upgrading to faster internet 

Sometimes, your internet connection might need more speed to support your online activities. In such instances, upgrading to a faster internet plan becomes necessary to achieve better speeds.

Most internet service providers advertise speeds up to a certain limit. However, some may not guarantee consistent attainment of those speeds. Even with a 100 Mbps plan, you might need more bandwidth to consistently receive that amount of bandwidth. 

So, consider a plan slightly faster than your estimated needs. It can buffer against network slowdowns, making them less noticeable.

Final Thoughts

Our internet world heavily relies on near-constant connections. As such, slow Wi-Fi connections mean slow everything. If anything, it’s fast internet or nothing!  We’re confident you’ll fix your Mac’s slow internet issues by implementing some of the solutions shared above.


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