What is the use of a smartphone that can barely connect to the Internet?
There are many factors that can cause your WiFi strength on Android devices to weaken. But there’s no need to give up. You can boost your WiFi signal to make your Android device’s Internet connection more stable.
Having problems with your home WiFi? Here are a few things you can try. The first thing you should do is look at your router’s frequency and channel.
Frequency & Channel
Older WiFi routers operate on one band – 2.4 GHz. If you and your neighbors are on the same frequency, the signal will be bypassed resulting in a weaker WiFi connection.
If your router is marketed as dual band, it supports the 5 GHz band. Switching to 5 GHz can improve your WiFi strength. This particular frequency is less common and supports more channels. However, it has a shorter range.
Choose another channel
Each frequency has smaller frequency bands within it. These are called channels. The average 2.4 GHz frequency has 11 channels, while 5 GHz has 45 channels.
Ideally, you want to join a channel that no one else is on. You can use Free Wifi scanner software to detect channels that other networks are using around you.
This can be difficult for those using 2.4 GHz as there are fewer options to choose from. Some routers have a feature that automatically selects the ideal channel for you. But you can manually select a channel and stay there indefinitely.
However, those above 5 GHz have a lot of channels to choose from. There’s actually a small chance of bumping into someone else in this frequency.
How to change your frequency and channel
- Using a laptop or desktop computer, connect to your wireless network.
- Open a web browser and enter your router’s IP address.
Note: If you don’t know your IP address, open Command prompt and type IPCONFIG. Your IP address will show up under Default Gateway. Also, read our post on how to find your WiFi hotspot IP.
- Fill in your login details to enter your router settings.
- Router settings vary by brand. But you should look for an option to change both the frequency (unless 5 GHz is not supported) and the channel.
Some high-end routers will have apps you can download to remotely access these settings.
Select a channel
With so many channels, how do you choose which one to use? One way is to use a Windows PC and use Command prompt or PowerShell.
- Open either program and enter NETSH WLAN SHOW NETWORKS MODE = BSSID
This command will show you all the broadcast networks, their SSIDs, and the channel they are using.
- Choose a channel that is the least popular. In the above example, you can select a channel from 1 to 6 and that channel will not affect the signal of the neighbor.
You can also download one of the many Android apps available on Google Play like WiFi Analyzer to help analyze WiFi signal strength in your area.
Buy a WiFi repeater
WiFi repeater – as the name implies – repeats WiFi signal to extend its range. If you live in a large house, using a repeater can boost the WiFi signal strong enough to reach your Android phone.
Update your WiFi router password
If you have not yet updated your router’s password, you should do so immediately. Strangers can steal your WiFi connection, causing your Internet speed to drop.
Enter your WiFi settings page and find the section that allows you to update your SSID and password.
Update your SSID and password accordingly. Make sure to use WPA2, the latest network encryption technology.
Connect outside your home
Having trouble with WiFi outside of your home? Unfortunately, your options are limited. Here are some workarounds.
Update Android and Firmware
The first thing you should do is make sure the Android operating system is running the latest version for your device. Also, make sure you update the browser app on your Android phone. Google is constantly releasing new updates for Chrome and it can fix your problem.
Also, depending on the type of Android phone you have, check to make sure your device doesn’t have any firmware updates. If so, upgrade to the latest firmware.
Erase your phone case
Cases are great for protecting your phone, but sometimes they can also affect the antenna in your Android smartphone. If you have a hard case or one with some kind of metal in it, your signal may be getting degraded. Try using device without case and then test your speed.
Use a signal booster app
Since Android has a more open ecosystem than iOS, you can download an app that supports WiFi or Signal Booster to boost WiFi or 3G/4G/LTE speeds.
Make sure to download the app with a rating of over 4 stars and more than 100k downloads.
Other simple measures
Bypass poor connection – Avoid networks with poor WiFi strength. The further away you are from the router, the worse the signal will be.
Stop moving – You will bounce from one hotspot to another if you are walking. This will interfere with your connection. Stay in place until you’re done browsing online.
Remove/Avoid Obstacles – If there is a wall in the way, move around it. The WiFi signal has trouble going against the structure. Walls, doors and other obstacles will reduce WiFi strength.