I was frequently getting “Your Internet Connection is Unstable” messages and was dropped from a couple of meetings until I followed some of the suggestions below. As we start the spring semester, I thought it would be useful to share these tips for improving your WiFi capability while using Zoom. If you are experiencing any issue with transferring data, a frozen screen, poor quality audio, or meetings getting disconnected while using a home or WiFi connection, here are some ideas to improve your service.
Placement of Your Router Matters
Watch this two-minute video about WiFi connectivity. It includes some ideas about where to place your router, and other useful tips (for example, placing your router in a closet or near other electronics will affect the transmission). Also, check your Internet bandwidth using an online speed test, such as nperf, Speedtest, or Comparitech. If your bandwidth is really low, you may need to upgrade your service to a higher bandwidth if internet connection is important to you.
Other Options to Check
If your internet router has wired ports, try to connect directly via an ethernet cable, rather than using WiFi. You can also try bringing your computer or mobile device closer to the WiFi router or access point in your home or office.
Upgrade your WiFI router firmware. Check your WiFi router vendor support site for firmware upgrade availability. Your router could be several years old if you haven’t upgraded it from your service provider. If you go this route, please keep in mind that it does require some technical expertise to configure it. (I’m lucky that my husband was a technician in his prior life.)
Use a WiFi extender such as Amped Wireless, Netgear or Linksys to increase the distance and strength of your WiFi signal. I have Netgear WiFi extenders in my bedroom and in my family room, which is located in our basement.
How I Solved My Issues
My husband and I had terrible internet connectivity and after doing research such as the above, decided to upgrade our modem and router and purchased this for $119. (Make sure that if you go this route, you buy something approved by your internet provider.) While it’s not inexpensive, we spend several hours a day on the internet — either on Zoom calls, streaming movies, playing games, etc., so it was worth it for us.
Your computer (laptop or desktop) may already have an ethernet port so you might not need this item but my Apple MacPro did not, and for a mere $8, I purchased this to connect my Mac directly to my router and my internet problems have been solved!
Here’s hoping that you all have great connectivity for spring classes.