PHOENIX (3 On Your Side) - During the coronavirus emergency, it is estimated that data usage by many families will jump 15% to 40%, according to CenturyLink. The technology company says that spike could lead to lagging internet speeds and slower connection times.

Wi-Fi at home

CenturyLink said customers can optimize internet speed by limiting interference. "Some devices can cause interference with the wireless signal in the home, including wireless keyboards, cordless phones, microwaves, and Bluetooth headsets," the company said in a news release.

Ken Colburn from Data Doctors said simply plugging in will help maintain a better connection. "Wired is always better than wireless," explained, "So, if you can physically connect through what's called an ethernet cable to your router, that eliminates a point of failure and it eliminates any congestion that might be going on with all of the wireless devices in your home."

For wireless devices, Colburn said families should also consider switching everything to 2.4 GHz settings. "Technically speaking, the 5 GHz option is faster, but it's only faster for exchanges between computers on the same network, not for the internet," Colburn said. "2.4 GHz actually has a better chance of getting through obstructions. It will go farther because it's a lower frequency."

The placement of your router also makes a difference. Colburn says you should avoid placing it near anything that's metal because that could cause an obstruction. CenturyLink suggests placing the router in the room where Wi-Fi will be used the most.


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