The End Of Terrible Wi-Fi Is Near

Megalith

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My Wi-Fi network has been working great for me, so I can’t really relate to this article. Aside from the snazzy animations, however, it does point out the fact that routers are not only getting prettier (does that even matter?), but more dummy proof. There is even some good news regarding Comcast for once; the company is supposedly offering a new “Advanced Wireless Gateway” router to its customers—but I don’t know anyone who hasn’t merely bought or upgraded their own with all the choices out there. At the end is some buzz about wireless extenders, though I’m missing a mansion to try those out in.

Everybody hates Wi-Fi. The boxes are ugly, and it never seems to work when you need it. But just when you thought wireless internet was unfixable, the most boring and hated appliance in your house may be on the verge of actually, um, working. Many of today’s devices are overcoming the design and technological flaws that marred the industry throughout its existence. The latest gadgets boast more effective antennas and do a better job cutting through radio interference. Some just look nicer than the hideous routers of yesteryear, with their thicket of wires, blinking lights and plastic parts akimbo.
 
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travbrad

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The problem with WiFi is people. People buy shitty routers and then place them to get shitty coverage. I also don't care what my router looks like, just that it works.
There can be issues even with a good router if you are in an area with tons of wireless networks using up all the channels, although of course 5ghz channels are usually pretty clear (for now...). Even 5ghz has some issues with inconsistent latencies compared to a wired connection though, particularly if you try using 80mhz or 160mhz channels. You can alleviate those problems by only using 20mhz or 40mhz channels, but you are losing out on raw throughput by doing that (still way faster than 2.4ghz though, and faster than most people's internet)

I agree most problems are people buying/renting shitty routers or not knowing how to configure them though. The modem/router combo I rented from Comcast for a bit was maxing out at about 20-25mbit over wireless. The one I bought has 6x the throughput using the same 2.4ghz band that the Comcast/Arris router used, and with the 5ghz band it's more like 15-20x. On top of that my ping to the router stays at 1ms most of the time now, whereas with the rented Comcast/Arris router it was rare that my ping was even in the single digits, with spikes of 200ms+
 

Darunion

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I was sad when I finally had to retire my wrt54g. I do mostly only use wifi for the phones though, rest is wired because I felt if something is stationary, what benefit is there to wifi for it? I did have terrible wifi in the apartment I used to live in, where you would see 30+ AP's in the list.
 

Team Merica

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I have a coworker who was only getting about 10Mbps speed tests on his devices associated to his home Wi-Fi, but paying for 100mbps from his ISP. He kept thinking it was a cable modem / ISP problem. He uses the router+wifi combo from the ISP.

I came over and did an analysis using a free app on an Android tablet and found that his printer was broadcasting its own SSID on the same band and channel as his router, and neither device was smart enough to detect the interference. They both interfered with each other, and it ruined his network.

I changed some settings around and bam! 98mbps throughput from a tablet.

This should have been automatically detected and avoided by the router.
 

Sparky

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My new Motorola a/c modem/router combo is the best I ever had. Full signal everywhere on the 5Ghz plus the laptop is just as fast on wifi as LAN when running internet speed tests.
 

dgingeri

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As long as they have WPS, they are not dummy proof. It's a HUGE security hole that is likely costing many people hundreds to thousands per year, and some probably don't even realize it. I say BAN WPS.
 

djgizmo

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I need make a better version of WPS. WPS isn't without its uses... just needs to be tightened up. We evolved security from WEP, to WPA, to WPA2 etc
 

matt167

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I have a cheap Belkin router. But it does not matter, I have the only Wifi on the street and speed is great out of it.. Locked down of course
 

Ocellaris

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As long as they have WPS, they are not dummy proof. It's a HUGE security hole that is likely costing many people hundreds to thousands per year, and some probably don't even realize it. I say BAN WPS.
Isn't WPS only enabled when you press the button to pair two devices over WiFi? Or is a WPS setup device using a different connection type after it's been setup?
 

mullet

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I use cat6, the only bad thing about wifi is telling your parents you're gay.
 
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MartinX

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"....and it never seems to work when you need it."

Something about the description of wifi there reminds of those infomercials that pretend a problem exists that simply doesn't

 

Betaboy1983

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I was sad when I finally had to retire my wrt54g. I do mostly only use wifi for the phones though, rest is wired because I felt if something is stationary, what benefit is there to wifi for it? I did have terrible wifi in the apartment I used to live in, where you would see 30+ AP's in the list.
I still use mine w/ dd-wrt. (screwed to the wall by my washing machine for people who care about looking cool) (y)
 

Dekoth-E-

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So the writer of the article basically admitted to not knowing a damn thing about how to setup wifi and decided instead of learning how, they blame the technology for being bad???

Jesus, why are some of these people allowed to write much less paid for it? I don't remember the last time I even had to mess with my WiFi. I spent the time and set it up right years ago and it has worked flawlessly every since. Also I don't care much what the box looks like, it isn't like I'm decorating a room around it. I got curious and followed the link, I instantly regretted it. This has got to be a paid advertisement article, there is no other reason for it to be that factually inaccurate while promoting praising one product.
 

CacaSapo

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I couldn't get past the first paragraph. The problem with Wifi, if there's any, is the people. They buy a cheap-ass router, pop it in and leave everything default, so so their neighbors, You have all these different routers fighting each-other on channel 6, along with people putting them in some corner of the house, then people wonder why wifi sucks at the other end of the house.
Yeah, there are 40/80Mhz issues and wireless overhead generally sucks, but that's expected and known. I can run my laptop's AC setup at 1300Mbits, but I always keep it plugged in for actual gigabit speeds.
 

Derfman

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"....and it never seems to work when you need it."

Something about the description of wifi there reminds of those infomercials that pretend a problem exists that simply doesn't
Exactly. This is how I felt while reading just the captioned part listed here on the [H].

 

Dead Parrot

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When your neighbors decide to embrace the IOT and each have 50+ poorly designed gizmos all competing for 11 channels + smart WiFi TVs + WiFi Blue Ray + ISP WiFi for others + ... you will long for the era of terrible WiFi because you will be in the era of no usable WiFi.
 

infinity9

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My WiFi has been working fine for about almost a decade, just gotta buy the correct routers.
Wow if it were just that simple. I've seen locations where 20 feet away you lose 60% of the signal. There are locations where you have 30-40 access points in the 2.4Ghz range or more. The equipment is a small part of the solution.
 

tec1500

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My wifi at the lake works decent. I can get 45% signal 300 feet down the driveway and 45% 1500 feet out on the lake.
 

WesM63

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So... Comcast is planning on doing what enterprise grade equipment has been doing for at least a decade?
 

dgingeri

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Isn't WPS only enabled when you press the button to pair two devices over WiFi? Or is a WPS setup device using a different connection type after it's been setup?
Nope. WPS is always on, even if you turn it off. By the standards set for WPS, it can just use a PIN, with the last 4 numbers dependent on the first 4, for a total of just under 4000 combinations, and it must be hard coded into the router hardware and unchangeable. So, it is hackable in an average of half an hour and at most 2 hours with just a simple Linux laptop, and once hacked, the person will know the WPS PIN for as long as they keep it, and can keep reconnecting in seconds. In addition, all off the shelf routers will keep WPS and the PIN on, and just turn off the advertisement for WPS capability, in case there is a device that connected to the Wifi and needs to reconnect. So, it can't be turned off. Some versions of DD-WRT and other open source firmware do allow actually turning it off, but not the default firmware of any router. So, it is an absolutely HUGE security hole.

I decided to go with a small business AP without WPS to secure my network.
 

nutzo

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yay lets kill more bees ...

http://inhabitat.com/its-official-cell-phones-are-killing-bees/

http://wakingscience.com/2016/04/what-is-killing-bees-most-of-all/

we dont need no stinkin pollination to grow dumb things like food
Nonsense.
I have multiple orange/lemon/lime trees in my back yard that have good WiFi coverage from both my router and my neighbors.
Yet, the trees are covered with bees while blooming. I rarely see a dead bee anywhere near the trees.
The bees do such a good job, the trees end up dropping at least half the fruit because the trees are so overloaded.
 

thesmokingman

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The problem with WiFi is people. People buy shitty routers and then place them to get shitty coverage. I also don't care what my router looks like, just that it works.
I ran a wifi scan in my corner of the neighborhood, and the result was hilarious. 80% of the networks are 2.4gz and they're all on the same channel, smh.
 

Neus

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Nonsense.
I have multiple orange/lemon/lime trees in my back yard that have good WiFi coverage from both my router and my neighbors.
Yet, the trees are covered with bees while blooming. I rarely see a dead bee anywhere near the trees.
The bees do such a good job, the trees end up dropping at least half the fruit because the trees are so overloaded.
What if it`s a different frequency/modulation/power that may be killing them?

That`s an interest experiment I`m going to search right now
 

collegeboy69us

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Once I bought a home -- i wired the rooms with Cat6... because an actual gigabit per second is always better than wifi. The only actual device that uses wifi in my house is my phone for when I feel like surfing reddit while taking a dump.

Part of me misses the good ole days of living in an apartment, pringles can antenna and leeching off the 20 to 30 networks that were there. hah WEP encryption... joke. even WPA/WP2 was crackable only because the entire complex was serviced by AT&T and back then (5 years ago) all their routers default password was a simple 10 digit *number*. Brute forcing took just a few hours with a GPU.
 

Private_Ops

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I was sad when I finally had to retire my wrt54g. I do mostly only use wifi for the phones though, rest is wired because I felt if something is stationary, what benefit is there to wifi for it?
Pretty much the same here. Had a lower end WRT54 that had DD-WRT on it. It was given to me for free about 10 years or so ago. Used it up till last year when it started to flake out under heavy load. Replaced it with one of the midrange Archer models and have had zero problems.
 

Domingo

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The Comcast modems/routers that they're sending out now are great. Mine's a Sysco. My wife is 2 floors above our router and pulls pretty close to the same speeds I get hard-wired.
The ones before this model...not so much. They were so shaky we just bought our own.
 

Gigus Fire

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Can't read the article when it starts out with a false premise. Who is this everyone that hates wifi? Wifi is great. The router i have is great.
Maybe it should be corrected to "Everyone hates the wifi router that comcast gives out". I could be onboard with that.
 

Gigus Fire

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Most people do care what the routers look like, and hide them specifically because they look like garbage.
I've never heard this before.
Not too sure how cool looking a mimo router with 6-8 antennas can possibly look like. Unless you disguise the antennas as tentacles and turn it into Cthulhu.
 

Terpfen

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I've never heard this before.
Not too sure how cool looking a mimo router with 6-8 antennas can possibly look like. Unless you disguise the antennas as tentacles and turn it into Cthulhu.
Not sure what to tell you. Visit non-technical people and ask them to put an Asus RT-AC88U in their living room.
 

Gigus Fire

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Not sure what to tell you. Visit non-technical people and ask them to put an Asus RT-AC88U in their living room.
Ask them where the nearest bookshelf is and put it on top out of view. On top of the china cabinet is another place in the dining room. You generally don't want them as a centerpiece, but that's the same with practically all electronic stuff.
 

CSI_PC

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When your neighbors decide to embrace the IOT and each have 50+ poorly designed gizmos all competing for 11 channels + smart WiFi TVs + WiFi Blue Ray + ISP WiFi for others + ... you will long for the era of terrible WiFi because you will be in the era of no usable WiFi.
Yep compounded that many devices will probably have the maximum transmission power (watts or mW) allowed so drowning out other devices and covering quite a large area-range.
Cheers
 
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