If you’re at home with multiple people working, schooling, taking lessons via video, and hanging out with friends on group chats, your home Internet may slow down. Here are some tips to help you speed it up again.
Turn off devices using your internet connection
Consider turning off devices when not in use. In addition to phones and computers, that may include:
- Google Home/Amazon Alexa
- Security devices (cameras, Ring doorbells)
- Tiles and other GPS trackers for keys, etc.
- Smart appliances like TVs and refrigerators
Minimize streaming devices during work/school hours
Ensure all devices and programs are logged out or turned off (not paused) when not in use. These include:
- Netflix, Hulu, YouTube TV, and other video streaming services
- Interactive gaming systems
- Music streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify
Limit the number of devices being used at the same time
Consider having family members stagger their online schedules or work in “shifts.”
Minimize use of a VPN
Depending on your employer, you may need a VPN connection to access secure work systems and data. However, many work applications like Outlook, MS Teams, and web browsing don’t require a VPN.
Speed and performance may improve when the VPN is not connected, so use it only when necessary. For example, group together tasks that require the VPN connection and then turn it off when they’re complete.
Limit uploading and downloading of large files during the work/school day. Instead, schedule cloud-based backups and large downloads to happen overnight to free up daytime speed.
Instead of using WiFi, it may help to get ethernet cables. Use one/them to plug devices into your router if it’s close by or into the appropriate wall jack if you have one at home.
You might have an old or under-powered router that can’t handle the added burden. (It may also not be as secure as newer modems.) Ask your internet provider about a new one.
Might it be time to upgrade?
You may want to upgrade your Internet service speed. Contact your Internet provider to find out what options they have for you. (Be sure to ask about any extra fees, introductory rates that increase later, and contracts before upgrading.)
Thanks to Century Link and Comcast for inspiration on this post.