More Power to You

Does your home’s wireless signal seem slower than it used to be? Is reception spotty in some rooms? Well, do something about it! Believe it or not, you don’t need an engineering degree to boost the range and speed of your wireless router.

1. Run a test. Before tinkering with the router, make sure the problem isn’t your Internet connection. The Web has plenty of free utilities that test broadband speeds, and they’re easy to run. Ookla Speedtest ( is known for delivering accurate results, or you could run a speed test from your Internet service provider. How fast should your connection be? If your provider promises download speeds of 10 Mbps (megabits per second), the speed test should prove it. If you use video streaming services like Netflix or Hulu Plus to watch HD-quality shows, you’ll want download speeds of at least 5 Mbps. Power users who stream HD video, play online games, and have four or more devices online at the same time will need a 15 Mbps or faster connection.

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