Better Broadband Performance 'How To'

We’re really keen to ensure you make the most of your new fibre broadband service. We’ve put together an information guide for you to use to check that your home is set-up to get the best broadband performance.

There are a range of factors that can affect the performance you get from your broadband service at home. These factors broadly fall into two categories – those that relate to the network connections involved in delivering the broadband service to your home and those that relate to the network and environment in your home.

The information below is aimed at helping you test for, and possibly fix, issues with the network or environment in your home. If you believe there is an issue with the network connection or your broadband service, we recommend you contact your retail service provider in the first instance.

WIFI MODEM

A WI-FI MODEM CAN BE POSITIONED TOO FAR AWAY FROM CONNECTED DEVICES

The distance between your devices and your wireless modem can dramatically affect your Wi-Fi performance. The impact can be heightened by interference such as what your walls are made of (concrete, brick, steel framing) and other objects (fish tanks, hot water cylinders).

Test: If your internet device has an indicator of the strength of your Wi-Fi signal, compare the signal strength where you usually use your internet device with the signal strength when positioned close to the wireless modem. Conduct a speed test where you usually use your device and compare it to a speed test done approximately one metre away from your wireless modem.

Possible solutions to this issue:

  • If you have structured Ethernet wiring in your home, consider moving the modem to an outlet point closer to where you use your devices the most, or in the centre of your house.
  • Consider purchasing an additional wireless access point. This can be positioned in the part of your home with poor Wi-Fi coverage or where additional capacity is required, and should be connected back to your primary wireless modem via an Ethernet cable. The new access point will need to be configured with your network name and password so devices can automatically connect to the best access point.

OLD DEVICES

DEVICES CAN BE TOO OLD OR HAVE SOFTWARE INSTALLED THAT CAN REDUCE BROADBAND PERFORMANCE

Old devices, or certain types of software installed on your devices, can have an impact on broadband performance. In some cases, your entire home network will reconfigure itself to perform at the level of the lowest performing device.Test: Disconnect all devices from your Wi-Fi network, or switch them off. Source a new device (preferably less than a year old) and use this to conduct a speed test to see if performance is improved using this device.

Test: Disconnect all devices from your Wi-Fi network, or switch them off. Source a new device (preferably less than a year old) and use this to conduct a speed test to see if performance is improved using this device.

Possible solutions to this issue:

  • Remove any unnecessary apps or software from your internet devices. Depending on your device, this will involve different steps.

  • Consider only connecting newer internet devices to your home network.
OUTDATED MODEM

WIRELESS MODEM MAY BE OUTDATED AND LIMITING YOUR PERFORMANCE

If you’re using a wireless modem that is not provided by your retail service provider, it may be too old or not appropriate for use with a fibre broadband service. The current standard for wireless modems that are appropriate for use with a fibre broadband connection is the 802.11ac standard.

Test: Check that your wireless modem is of an appropriate standard. This is likely to be listed in the features on the wireless modem box as either “802.11ac” or as “AC”. If not, you may need to check by contacting your retail service provider and asking them.

Possible solutions to this issue:

  • Use the wireless modem provided by your retail service provider.

  • Purchase a new 802.11ac standard wireless modem. This can be supplied by your retail service provider, or purchased as a ‘BYO’ modem (if your service provider supports BYO modems).

INTERFERANCE

OTHER ELECTRICAL DEVICES IN OR AROUND THE HOME CAN INTERFERE WITH A WI-FI SIGNAL

Interference to a Wi-Fi signal can be caused by a range of other electrical devices that are common in or around the home. Devices that may cause interference include transmitting devices (such as neighbouring Wi-Fi networks, cordless phones, baby monitors and Bluetooth devices) and other electrical devices (such as halogen desk lamps, dimmer switches, speakers and even electric fences).

Test: Check your Wi-Fi signal strength and conduct a speed test while other devices are on. Then compare these to the signal strength and a speed test when all other devices are turned off and disconnected from the power.

Possible solutions to this issue:

  • Ensure all unnecessary electrical devices are turned off when not in use or are removed from the environment.

  • Reduce the number of electrical devices in your home; particularly those that are positioned near your wireless modem, or between it and where you use your connected devices.
fibre performance 2

Tips for testing broadband speed

  • Your retail service provider may have a speed test service available on its website.

  • Alternatively, speedtest.net is a reputable test service.

  • Always conduct three speed tests to ensure you get a good sample of the performance of your service as test performance can vary.

 If this information does not help you solve your broadband performance issues, you should contact your retail service provider as they may be able to help.

Alternatively, there are a range of IT support services available in Christchurch that can help you ensure your home network is connected properly.

Download a PDF version of this information guide here.