How to optimize your Wi-Fi network with Wifi Analyzer

Wireless routers have quickly become an essential appliance in the modern home. Using the Android app, Wifi Analyzer, we'll show you how to check on some key settings to optimize your Wi-Fi network.

Wireless routers have quickly become an essential appliance in the modern home. Here's how to use the Android app, Wifi Analyzer, to optimize your WiFi network.


Wireless channel

Wireless networks use specific channels within the wireless spectrum. An overcrowded wireless channel results in decreased bandwidth and/or connectivity issues for your network. Use Wifi Analyzer to see what channels are in use and to identify the best channel to set on your router.

Step 1:
The first time Wifi Analyzer is launched, it goes straight into the Channel graph view. To switch to Channel rating view, press the Menu Key on your Android device and select View.

Wifi Analyzer change view
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 2:
From the list of views, select Channel rating.

Wifi Analyzer select Channel rating
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 3:
To select your access point (your wireless network), press the location on the screen where it says, "Please tap here to set an AP."

Wifi Analyzer Channel rating set access point
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Step 4:
After selecting your access point, you'll see a list of channels, rated by stars. At the top of the screen, you'll see your AP listed as well as the channel that your network is currently using. Wifi Analyzer will recommend other channels if it determines that they're less crowded. Keep in mind that not all routers use 14 channels. Some routers only go up to 11. Also, some routers autoscan channels to pick the best one. If your router can't autoscan or doesn't do it well, you can set the channel manually.

Wifi Analyzer Channel rating better channels
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

Signal Meter

You can use Wifi Analyzer's Signal meter view to find out if you've positioned your wireless router in the best possible location. Using the signal meter, you can walk around your home or office to see if the signal reaches in those areas, and make adjustments as necessary.

Wifi Analyzer signal meter view
Screenshot by Ed Rhee

AP List

The AP list view is useful for quickly glancing at the details of your network and neighboring wireless networks. The security detail is handy when you need to set up a new device on your network, but can't remember which security method you implemented. You can also use the AP list to verify that your network is still secured. You can even configure this view to display the cipher type (TKIP or AES).

Wifi Analyzer access point list view
Screenshot by Ed Rhee


The next time your wireless network acts up, you can pull out your Android phone and begin troubleshooting.

Tags:
Tech Culture
About the author

Ed Rhee, a freelance writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area, is an IT veteran turned stay-at-home-dad of two girls. He focuses on Android devices and applications while maintaining a review blog at techdadreview.com.

 

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