If only flipping the calendar to a new year would eliminate our technical problems. In 2023, there are many things you can do to make your digital life easier.
Start by cleaning out your inbox. You should hit zero at least once. Tap or click for my shortcut to do this.
Tired of tech companies violating your privacy? Take action! Apple, Google, Amazon and Facebook will always listen unless you change these settings.
You don’t have to struggle with bad Wi-Fi anymore. These simple, fixable errors could be the cause of your connection issues.
1. You Let Freelancers Use Your Network
Do you know exactly which devices are using your connection? If your Wi-Fi isn’t password protected, you need to fix it. Tap or click here for instructions on finding your router password and changing it.
Or your password is easy to guess and someone is stealing your internet.
On a Windows PC, wifi viewer Scans your network and shows you the IP addresses, MAC addresses, names and manufacturers of computers, tablets and smartphones it detects on your network.
Once you start Wireless Network Watcher, you will see all detected devices in the list. You should be able to identify connected devices. For example, you might see devices from Apple and Amazon Technologies when using your iPhone and Amazon Echo.
On Mac, Who is using my Wi-Fi will show you who is accessing your Wi-Fi. You’ll have to do some research to find out some connected devices. Look for a description and manufacturer.
Don’t panic if you don’t recognize the device. Look around your house to see which appliances, TVs, tablets, laptops and smartphones are connecting to Wi-Fi.
Read through the list to make sure you understand everything. If you see a device you don’t recognize, you know someone is connecting without permission.
2. Your router is old or misplaced
Years old router? It can hinder your connection and put your security at risk.
Choosing a new router is tricky, so I did the hard work for you. Check out my suggestions below.
There is also the question of where to put the router. Don’t stick it on the floor of your closet or away from where you use the most internet.
Try placing your router near the center of the room for the fastest speeds. It is also best to place it as high as possible, on a shelf, or even mounted on a wall. If your router has antennas, point them in different directions.
Other devices can also affect your router. Stay away from cordless phones, bluetooth speakers, microwave ovens and baby monitors.
3. You’re not paying for enough bandwidth
Depending on your workload at home, you may not need super fast internet speeds. If you stream content on one device and mostly check email and social media on your phone, you can use lower speeds.
If your home is filled with smart, connected devices, you need enough bandwidth to support them.
Here are some guidelines to get started:
- If you only have a few devices connected to your Wi-Fi and your network is mostly used for web browsing, then a 10 Mbps plan should be more than enough.
- If you watch a lot of video and download a lot of media, 25 Mbps should be fine for you.
- For heavy, high-quality streaming and online gaming, you’ll need 100 Mbps or more.
- You can use 500 Mbps to stream, play online, and download simultaneously on many devices.
Be mindful of your data caps. If you go over the cap, your ISP may throttle your speed or even charge you for going over the cap.
4. You never change channels
Moving to a different channel for your router is an easy tweak to improve your speeds. This step is useful if you are tuned to the 2.4GHz frequency. Moving from one channel to a less crowded one may help speed things up.
Try using a Wi-Fi scanner to check for the best 2.4GHz channel or the least used channel in your area.
For Macs, Apple offers a free tool called Wireless Diagnostics.hold option key Simultaneously click Wi-Fi icon on the right side of the menu bar, then choose open wireless diagnostics.
For Windows, Download NetSpot Wi-Fi Analyzer. Similar to your Mac’s scan tool, this app instantly gives you information about Wi-Fi signals in your area, including the channels they use.
5. Kids are downloading a bunch of game updates and videos
When you’re trying to join a work video call, the last thing you want is your kids downloading huge game updates in the next room. This eats up a lot of bandwidth and you’ll all end up frustrated.
To make things run more smoothly, schedule updates and big downloads for 1am, when everyone is or should be asleep.
Need help getting kids to follow tech rules? I can help. Tap or click to download my tech contract for parent and child to sign.
Try my podcasts on the go or at home
My popular podcast is called “Kim Komando Today. “It’s a solid 30 minutes of tech news, tips, and tech questions for callers like you from around the country. Search it wherever you get the podcast. For your convenience, click the link below to get the most recent episode.
The Supreme Court hears about social media, why you should delete Kaspersky, Facebook’s troubles, driverless air taxis, the worst kind of text message scams and life-saving tech. Plus, how to make sure Amazon Alexa doesn’t record everything you say and find hidden spy cameras.
Listen to the podcast here Or wherever you get your podcasts. Just search for my last name “Komando”.
Get more know-how Kim Komando Showbroadcast on more than 425 radio stations and available as podcast. Sign up for Kim’s free 5-minute morning wrap-up Learn about the latest security vulnerabilities and technology news. need help?leave your questions to kim here.
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