If you’re now working at home due to the COVID-19 outbreak, you may find yourself without an IT department, on your own at home with your tech woes.

The most common work-from-home tech issues are the ones that impede our productivity: unreliable internet connections, low-quality video calls and unreliable Wi-Fi.

Now you’re not in the office, or out meeting clients and suppliers like us, it is likely you will want to stay connected and luckily modern technology allows this to happen via Video Conferencing. For this, you will need a reliable internet connection.

The No. 1 tech issue at home is internet connectivity.
Compared with the speedy broadband connections you probably have in your office, our home internet speeds can feel sluggish, especially with all your neighbours also stuck at home and online. Home broadband normally shares capacity in your local area (exchange) so if your neighbours are all online binge-watching the latest Netflix show, it can cause average speeds to dip.

If your Wi-Fi signal is unreliable, meaning it’s strong in one room but weak in another, the solution could be a simple one – switching rooms – or you might need to invest in a modern mesh Wi-Fi system.

First, try moving your wireless router.
It’s not at all unusual for a Wi-Fi router to be stuck in the corner of a house, near the wall where service enters your home. That’s the worst place for it. Wi-Fi has trouble penetrating walls so if it’s practical, try moving your router to a more central location by running a cable from the wall jack.

Try to keep the router away from big pieces of metal, like fridges, freezers or microwaves.

If all that fails, a new router might be the solution.
Buy one that lets you connect multiple wireless access points together to blanket your home with a strong internet connection. Popular mesh systems include Google Wifi and Amazon’s Eero.

If your internet speed feels slow, a modern Wi-Fi system with support for the latest wireless standards, like the aforementioned ones, would help. But if speeds continue to feel sluggish even after you upgrade your networking gear, you may have to contact your internet provider to ask about other options. Some providers may offer faster broadband speeds at higher prices.

What about a backup option?
When connectivity problems arise, you can resort to using your smartphone’s hotspot feature, which turns the device’s 4/5G connection into a mini Wi-Fi network. Mobile networks are designed to handle larger amounts of users, so chances are that your smartphone’s data connection will be faster when your broadband is overwhelmed. Smartphone manufacturers offer instructions on their websites on how to turn iPhones and Android phones into hot spots. Note: use this feature sparingly to avoid surpassing your mobile plan’s data limits.

Austin Marketing is a versatile, full-service marketing agency. We hope this has helped and look forward to having a video call with you to discuss how we can help keep your business moving forward during these turbulent times.