Getting the MOST out of your WiFi connection AireBeam now provides Public WiFi service at Quail Run, Las Colinas, Desert Gardens, Picacho Peak, Saddle Mountain and Orchard Ranch RV Resorts throughout Pinal, Maricopa and Yavapai Counties, AZ. Our WiFi services have been constructed using state-of-the-art transmitters, designed to provide a strong signal to your laptop and super sensitive receivers to receive the signal back from your Laptop computer’s wireless network adapter. The purpose of this article to help you understand the limitations of WiFi and how you can maximize the speed and performance of your WiFi connection.
Laptop Signal Strength
A WiFi connection between your laptop computer and a wireless access point requires that your PC’s wireless network adapter be able to receive the signal from our access points and, most importantly, be able to send a usable signal back to our access points. Our wireless access points are located high above the RVs and Park Models in the RV Resort and have 200mw radio transmitters and super sensitive receivers with medium gain antennas able to amplify the weakest return signals from laptops. Most laptops are equipped with 50mw radio transmitters and have low gain antennas built into their lids. Bottom line, a laptop’s WiFi card is designed to permit connections between your living room and a bedroom in your home. So connecting your laptop to a WiFi access point 100-300′ feet away when you are sitting inside an RV is at best a challenge!
Laptop Radio Strength
The important point to take away from this is that your laptop is only 25% as strong as our wireless access points; thus maximizing the return signal from your laptop to our access point is the means for you to obtain optimum WiFi performance. Laptop wireless network adapters are designed for indoor use at an optimum range of 50-100 feet from a wireless router.
Placement of Access Points
When we construct a series of WiFi access points (which are essentially ultra-powerful wireless routers), we place them at intervals that assure that we are providing a usable signal to all of the laptops in the RV Resort and that most laptops can send an adequately strong return signal. However, the presence of one or more of the following conditions can reduce the signal sent as well as received.
Impediments to Signal Quality
If you are using your laptop within an RV or park model, you should be aware of elements that can reduce your WiFi capability. Metal is the enemy of WiFi radio wave transmission; it blocks radio waves and thus reduces the signal quality. There could be metal foil on the back of the insulation within the walls of a fiberglas-sided RV or wood product-sided park model. Metal clad park models and travel trailers surely reduce the signal as do metal sun shades located over the park model living room window and metalized UV coatings on RV Windows. If an object that contains metal is located in the line of sight between your location and the access point, again, the signal will be blocked.
Signal to Noise Ratio
Radio receivers receive all signals on the frequency at which the receiver is set: in the case of WiFi, 2.4Ghz. For data transmission to occur, the WiFi signal must be at least 20dbm greater than the signal level of the noise or spurious transmissions. If your signal is blocked, the signal to noise ratio (SNR) diminishes and the signal level drops below the 20dbm threshold; data transmission errors then occur sending and receiving data to and from the laptop to the access point and your laptop then either browses slowly or not at all.
The chart below illustrates the point. In Case 1, the noise level (red) is significantly lower than the signal level (green). In Case 2. as more and more guests arrive at the RV Resort and crank up their wireless laptops, the noise level increases while the signal level remains the same, thus reducing the SNR. In Case 3, If you then install a Range Expander which amplifies the WiFi signal as well as the return signal from your laptop to the Access point, your WiFi service vastly improves.
Here’s a solution for you! Get a High Power WiFi USB Adapter
We stock a 1,000mw WiFi adapter that plugs into the USB port of your computer. Your laptop radio is 50 or 100mw at the most. So, this adapter overcomes most of the return signal problems. You can order one at our office for about $50 by clicking HERE.
Our network, including the WiFi networks in the RV Resorts are monitored 24×7 and performance within the networks is tested frequently. Our network is connected to the Internet by an OC-12 FIber Optic cable, capable of carrying 540mbps; it is the largest fiber optic cable in use by any ISP in the region. We have lots of bandwidth, more than enough to provide rapid Internet service.
Just as highways can become congested during peak traffic hours, so can the Internet or one or more of your favorite web sites. Each night and on weekends, when hundreds of millions of Internet users are home from work and surfing the web, the Internet is often slower than at off peak times. Since AireBeam has such a “fat pipe” connecting its network to the Internet, our traffic joins the Internet directly in to interstate carrier circuits, thus bypassing most of the local Arizona traffic and assuring the fastest possible Internet service.