How Does A WiFi Heat Map Work?
25 September 2019
WiFi speeds can be inconsistent and annoyingly slow, ever wonder why?
Problems vary from the distance to your router to what the actual structure of the building is made of and when you are trying to send an email, make a VOIP call or trying to binge your current Netflix series, this can be incredibly frustrating!!!
This is where the WiFi heat map comes into play. With an accurate, well thought out WiFi map you can negate any potential business loss through communication issues or anger inducing loading circles.
So, what actually is a WiFi heatmap?
You may have noticed that when potentially looking to switch mobile phone providers you will have the option to “check your coverage” on their websites. A WiFi heat map is fundamentally the same thing, just with WiFi and not phone signal. It is a map of the coverage you get from your different WiFi access points throughout the area of influence. It typically uses the classic red, yellow and green style key to show what areas are covered and what areas struggle. There are a few reasons WiFi network strength can be affected but the initial port of call for most technicians will be a WiFi heat map to find problem areas then work out why these areas are problematic.
What causes slow data speeds on a WiFi network?
Like I mentioned above there are numerous ways a WiFi data signal can be affected but here is a list of a few that might be the cause:
- Your current WiFi network is not up to the task for all your data needs
If you host large events, have times throughout the year when lots of people will be connected or have points where large amounts of data are needed then your day to day package might not be up to the job.
- Things just being in the way!
Like all radio-waves, some pass through objects better than others. Wifi is no exception. This means that if there is a lot of mass between devices that need WiFi and the WiFi router you may suffer with signal. Walls, building structure materials and even a large number of people can affect your WiFi signal. This is actually where a WiFi heat map comes into its own. With the ability to accurately see signal dips and strengths you can address problem areas throughout the environment. Once these problem areas have been found there are numerous ways to solve signal strength issues.
- Pesky neighbours WiFi encroaching into your space!
Believe it or not, competing WiFi signal is a thing. If you have a few businesses around you with their own WiFi networks then (without WiFi heat map analysis and correct access point implementation) you can expect less than 100% efficiency from your WiFi
Getting an accurate analysis before AP implementation
Initially, a technician will come to the premises and work out the optimum positions for your access points. Once the WiFi signal has been activated he can then go around creating a WiFi heat map knowing that the foundations for the wireless network install are solid.
A WiFi heat map is then created and all problem areas (if any) are addressed and optimised.
A Wifi heat map will be a part of the overall survey, other factors include:
- Your data needs
- What the building structure is made of
- Your current network installation
- The area of your current workspace
- Any potential interference from other devices
- The amount of AP’s you might need
With all this to think about and take on board it is understandable why we take pride in the network installations we provide. There is a lot to think about but we are comprehensive and methodical in our process from start to finish.