The Truth About Home Internet: Debunking Common Myths11 January 2023
The Internet is now an integral part of our daily lives. It is used for work, entertainment, learning, and communication with others. With the increasing popularity and accessibility of the Internet, various myths about its functionality have emerged. The purpose of this article is to present and debunk some of these myths related to using the Internet at home.
In this article, we will examine several categories of popular myths:
- Myths about connection speed and coverage,
- Myths about configuration and equipment,
- Myths about the operation of different wireless network standards.
Understanding the truth about these myths will help you better comprehend the functioning of home Internet and make informed decisions regarding network configuration and utilization at home. The article is based on the latest information and technical standards, providing you with up-to-date tips and insights.
Myth 1: Slow Internet is inevitable in rural areas
This myth is misleading because the quality of an internet connection primarily depends on the availability of technical infrastructure, not the geographic location. Many rural areas now have access to high-speed internet through various technologies such as fiber-optic, copper, or wireless connections.
Our AirFiber wireless network covers dozens of villages with fewer than 100 residents, providing internet speeds of up to 100 Mbps. The most popular speed packages in these areas are 35 Mbps and 50 Mbps, which enable comfortable internet usage on multiple devices and streaming video content on VOD platforms.
Myth 2: Speedtest shows the exact speed of my Internet
Speedtest is a useful tool for measuring internet connection speed, but it is not free from measurement errors. The result of a speed test can be distorted by various factors such as overall internet traffic in your household, hardware configuration, or antivirus software.
Speedtest will not show you the exact speed of your internet when multiple people in your household are online at the same time. The measurement will also be distorted when it is performed to a server that is very distant or heavily loaded, or when using weak equipment.
To ensure the most accurate measurement of internet speed, perform the test on the most powerful computer you have, connect it to the router via an Ethernet cable, and make sure that other household members are not using the internet during the measurement. It’s worth using a certified tool like pro.speedtest.pl, which will indicate any measurement errors.
Myth 3: I download at the same speed on every device
Downloading data from the internet is not the same on every device. The download speed is shared among all devices using the internet at the same time, so the download speed may vary on each device.
In addition, the actual download speed may differ between devices due to the following factors:
- Hardware configuration: Older device models may not support the same high download speeds as newer models.
- Connection type: The download speed may differ depending on whether it is a wired or wireless connection.
- WiFi standard version: If a device does not support a newer version of the WiFi standard, it may download data at a lower speed.
Myth 4: I can speed up the internet with the help of software
There are many programs and applications that claim to speed up your internet connection, but their effectiveness is limited or non-existent.
The speed of your internet connection depends on various factors such as hardware configuration, connection quality, latency, home network traffic, distance from the router, etc. Most of these factors cannot be influenced by external software.
Some applications may only improve the performance of your computer but do not directly affect the internet speed. In fact, there have been cases of “internet booster” programs that actually slowed down the connection by interfering with different components of the operating system and home network infrastructure.
If you want to increase your internet speed, it is best to contact your internet service provider directly or utilize some of the router options that allow for network optimization.
Myth 5: A new router will improve internet coverage and speed
Replacing an old router with a new device is not a guarantee of improved internet coverage and speed. Before making a decision, it is important to analyze all the factors that can affect the quality of your connection.
Over time, new devices have been added to your home network, such as smartphones, smart TVs, gaming consoles, and other smart devices that require internet access. It may be the case that with a large number of devices using WiFi, you need a new router, but it is not always necessary.
Sometimes, simply increasing your internet speed with your provider or ordering a network configuration service from your internet provider can suffice to meet the demands of your network.
Before deciding to replace your device, it’s worth knowing that all routers sold in Europe currently have a transmitter power limit of 100 mW for WiFi 2.4 GHz networks and 200 mW for WiFi 5 GHz networks, as mandated by the EU Radio Equipment Directive of 2014.
Older devices, still operating on outdated software, had transmitter power that was even ten times higher. This is why when comparing new routers to old devices, you may have the genuine impression that “WiFi signal used to be much better, and I could even get coverage in my backyard.”
Mit 6: The best way to improve WiFi signal is to place the router in the center of the house
Placing the router in the center of the house can indeed help distribute the WiFi signal in all directions, but it’s not always the case. Sometimes, there may be load-bearing walls or devices in the center that can weaken the WiFi signal.
It’s important to know that there are several other ways to improve WiFi signal in your home, including:
- Positioning the router at eye level or on a wall that is facing the area where you want a strong signal.
- Increasing the number of antennas on the router, which can help distribute the WiFi signal in different directions.
- Removing obstacles such as furniture or other electronic devices that can interfere with the WiFi signal.
- Changing the channel on which the router operates if you’re experiencing interference from other devices.
- Boosting the signal strength through router settings or by purchasing a WiFi repeater/extender.
Mit 7: Restarting the router solves all network problems
Restarting the router can help resolve certain network issues such as no internet connection or unstable signal, but it is not a cure-all for all network problems.
Restarting the router involves completely turning it off and then turning it back on. During the restart process, the router goes through a reconfiguration of the connection, which can resolve issues stemming from software errors.
However, restarting the router does not solve problems such as no internet from the provider’s side, hardware failures, incorrect network settings, too many connected devices, or other issues that require a different approach.
In summary, restarting the router is a useful tool, but it does not solve all network problems. It’s important to consider other potential causes of issues and explore alternative methods for troubleshooting network problems.
Mit 8: All WiFi networks have the same range
The range of a WiFi network is closely related to the output signal strength emitted by the router, but it also depends on many other factors such as the type and character of the building, the presence of obstacles, the quality of the connection, and other electronic devices nearby.
WiFi networks utilize different standards and technologies, which can have varying ranges. For example, the WiFi 6 (802.11ax) standard is more efficient than older WiFi standards, allowing for faster connections and exhibiting better range compared to WiFi 5.
Mit 9: The more antennas a router has, the greater the range will be
The number of antennas is not the sole determining factor for the range of a WiFi network. The antennas on a router can vary in type and purpose. Broadband antennas may generate a signal with greater amplitude but dispersed power, while directional antennas concentrate the signal in one direction, providing better signal quality but only in the direction they are pointed.
Moreover, the number of antennas is not the only factor influencing the range of a WiFi network. The quality of the router, its power, its design, the utilization of new technologies, and the configuration of the connection all play a role in the network’s range.
Mit 10: The 5 GHz band is always better than the 2.4 GHz band
The 5 GHz band is not always superior to the 2.4 GHz band. Both frequency bands have their own advantages and limitations, and neither is always better than the other.
The 2.4 GHz band is older and more congested as it is used by many devices such as TVs, mobile phones, and even microwaves. However, it has better range than the 5 GHz band, which makes it often preferred by devices that require internet access from greater distances.
On the other hand, the 5 GHz band is less congested and allows for higher data transmission speeds. However, it has a smaller range than the 2.4 GHz band and is often more susceptible to obstacles such as walls or furniture.
It’s important to choose the appropriate band based on individual needs, considering factors such as range and required connection speed.