There are millions of people who own or rent out a static caravan lodge or holiday home. Buying a caravan can be a huge decision, not just financially but also this can provide a huge change of lifestyle for families. With many in rural locations, it is important to find out how to get the best WiFi connection. Site owners will also want to provide great broadband to their pitches.
When transmitting data wirelessly the speed and reliability of the connection are important. For example, if you were streaming a movie or playing an online game it would be very frustrating to have long periods when the screen was frozen while buffering took place. The technology works in very different ways, therefore it is important to get expert advice when choosing the best option.
Mobile broadband technology uses cellular networks to transmit data, whereas wifi hotspots and Mi-Fi devices use wireless signals from a nearby cell site. As well as using different ways to transmit the data they also generally provide different speeds and reliability of the connection.
Fixed Line ADSL
This is rarely an option for leisure parks due to the location. This type of broadband requires the signal to send sent through copper fixed wires. Even if this is an option the signal is usually poor due to being so far away from the exchange. Fixed-line companies such as BT also force a phone line which isn’t ideal. It is much more useful to us modern VOIP technology for making calls.
4G Mobile broadband for caravans
4G has the potential to be faster than ADSL, although, in reality, it will depend very much on where you are located. The best way is to test your current speed connection and then use this information to work out if a 4G rural set-up would be better for you.
Data plans for 4G devices can be purchased to suit the users’ needs – from a casual holidaymaker wanting to check their emails to regular lodgers seeking fast internet access 24/7.
Wireless & Satellite broadband for caravans
When people internet in a motorhome or caravan in a rural location, it is often thought that mobile broadband is the only option, but this is not the case. This misconception comes from the fact scenic locations don’t always have access to fixed-line.
Line-of-sight broadband will allow the broadband to be beamed from nearby masts to an antenna on the caravan. This is then beamed into the caravan, where it can be unraveled for easy access. Whilst fixed-line broadband isn’t always available in rural areas, line-of-sight should always give usable speeds to surf the net and check emails.
Satellite or Microwave wireless broadband is a great option and can offer high speeds and data plans that can be unlimited. This means the packages can be much more flexible and the connection more reliable.
Caravan WIFI Booster
If you already have WIFi available on site but need it to be accessible in a certain area of the park or individual caravan, you can also look at a wifi booster. This is a directional antenna that can pick up the available wifi signal and repeat it back to your caravan, allowing you to access the internet.
A WIFi booster will usually be used in conjunction with a router and do require some setting up and configuration. You may need one or multiple units to achieve the desired connection speeds.
What about MIFI?
Mobile Internet WIFI devices are another option. You may know these as a ‘dongle’. Many of these are not directional and can connect using the 4G network of your telephone provider rather than a traditional wifi network.
These can be useful if you’re on an inconsistent data plan or prepaid, as it will only use the internet when needed. These are quite an old technology now but could still be an option if all else fails. Speeds don’t tend to be great with these.
5 top tips for getting great WIFI in your caravan
Check the speed of your connection – many people are surprised that speeds can be as low as 1Mb which is too slow for Skype or Netflix for example.
Upgrade your router.
Upgrade your software – make sure the latest security updates are applied to protect your devices from hackers and get optimals speeds.
Get a WIFI Booster.
Upgrade to wireless technology with Wave.
If you need help and no-obligation advice then get in touch with a member of our team by filling in our online form below or calling 01254 377373.
Lakota Entertainment had planned its first open-air festival welcoming huge crowds. Due to the remote location, they needed a rural broadband specialist so Wave Internet was happy to help! The organisers wanted a cashless festival to help with licencing and security, as well as increased profits.
The location was a rural location, set in a field just outside Bristol, with the event covering over 4 acres!
Health and Safety regulations require that emergency calls can be made at any time, so this must be provided by the organiser. This includes emergency calls in the medical tent as well as security.
There was over 100 tap and go payment units requiring constant WIFI (Imagine a 30-meter long bar, with a constant stream of people wanting to buy drinks.
As with most festivals and events, stallholders and vendors hire their space to sell to the guests. Part of the contract requires the organisers to provide a stable and reliable broadband connection. If this is not the case, vendors could face huge problems trying to take payments.
Aside from the stalls, there were over 10,000 guests with the potential to use the same 4G connection, so this was not an option. (Think New Years Eve texts, sometimes don’t send until 7/8 hours after midnight!)
To make sure that there was a reliable phone system in place, we set up a VOIP network with multiple phones on site. The festival had its own specific numbers and this did not rely on phone signal at any point.
Then we needed to set up the broadband that vendors could rely on. A fibre unit was connected at a nearby building, and using our wireless internet technology, beamed the internet to multiple hubs around the site, at each hub set up a commercial wifi network to allow the vendors to connect payment systems. The network was also secured for Vendor use only and festival staff, prioritised for payments.
We were able to ensure seamless speedy tap n go payment services for everyone. The festival was a huge success and we look forward to orgasing the broadband for more festivals next Summer!
Need WIFI for your Festival?
Wave Internet specialises in large sites and networks on a huge scale. Get in touch to arrange a no-obligation chat with your friendly team.
When you live in remote, rural areas, accessing superfast broadband can be a headache but there are specialist broadband providers that will ensure you receive reliable fast internet at blistering speeds!
The reason why some internet providers struggle to offer a great service in hard to reach areas is that the infrastructure is limited or simply isn’t there which can be a huge challenge for some larger organisations.
In urban areas, there is a real demand for high-speed internet, but why shouldn’t this be the case in rural areas as it’s just as important?
Find a provider that specialises in Remote Areas
If you are based in one of these difficult to reach rural locations, you may want to use a provider that specialises in these areas as for standard broadband your entire connection depends on a telephone line, so the distance you are from the nearest line will determine the speed and efficiency of your broadband.
If you are based outside of a busy town or city centre area, your options will be limited as you will be far from the exchange and therefore you will be experiencing much slower speeds.
So, what are the main reasons for broadband being slower in rural areas?
With fibre broadband, the cables run from your nearest street cabinet and your home so if your home is far from the nearest cabinet, this could directly impact your overall broadband speed
As homes aren’t as close together as they often are in towns and cities, a single street cabinet may cover a much larger geographic area despite having the same number of telephone lines attached. This means that the line length to street cabinets tends to be much longer so you are likely to experience much slower fibre broadband speeds!
Some of the lines are also not upgraded as regularly as there is less demand so larger telecoms companies might make the decision that the demand does not warrant upgrading the services!
If you live in the countryside, you may be wondering what the benefits of your broadband option might be.
Here’s a breakdown to help you to decide on the best option:
Fibre broadband delivered by fibre optic cables
Fibre broadband is one of the most popular options with almost 90% of homes using this type of broadband. This is a high speed, efficient and reliable option.
Standard broadband using copper phone wires
Most households should be able to access standard broadband, however this is not the best option for rural locations as it is more common and much faster in urban areas.
Mobile broadband running on 4G
If your area has good 4G coverage you shouldn’t have a problem, however relying on mobile broadband could be unreliable, especially in a more remote location. However, there is no need to have a phone line and line rental charges so this is a bonus!
Satellite broadband using a satellite dish in your home
You don’t need a phone line for satellite broadband and the speeds are much faster so it is usually offered by more niche providers.
Fixed wireless broadband via a mast and receiver
Speeds can be fast with fixed wireless broadband, however this can vary and isn’t the most reliable option if you live in a rural area.
Bonded broadband which uses two or more phone lines to create a faster one
This is a very specialist option only offered by certain providers in the UK. Bonded broadband is able to significantly enhance internet speeds where faster services are not available but these services are primarily aimed at businesses as opposed to being used for residential use.
Making the switch and changing your broadband is easy!
If you are unhappy with the broadband service you are currently experiencing in a rural area, you are entitled to change this so you can benefit from a much faster and more reliable service!
There are many benefits to switching – from faster speeds and less monthly line rental fees to reliable and faster response times from engineers, so here’s what you should consider if you are looking to switch services soon:
There are tonnes of broadband providers out there, each offering something a little different for a slightly different price. When you want to switch, always use a price comparison tool to see what the options are in your rural area, and which one will give you the best deal.
Broadband contracts tend to last a while, so check what’s going on with the one from your current provider before taking out a new one. If you’re no longer within the contract’s minimum terms, you’re free to switch.
Work out which speed you need! A package with superfast speeds (24Mb and above) is great for big households, or anyone who streams a lot of video, plays games online, or downloads large files regularly but you might need less than this if you are not such a heavy wifi user!
Consider their customer service – Will you get a quick response from them if something does go wrong? Have a read of some customer reviews to find out what other existing users are saying!
Consider a specialist broadband provider
For example, broadband companies such as Wave Internet are experts in providing high speed and reliable broadband services across rural areas across the North West and they can offer dedicated wireless fibre broadband to difficult to reach locations with ease.
Larger, conventional companies cannot supply rural areas in the best way as they often have pressure to oversubscribe their mast sites which can mean slower speeds and less efficient broadband services for their customers.
How will the 2025 BT switch off affect countryside broadband?
BT will be implementing a fully online Voice Over IP system set to transition completely by 2025. This will mostly affect those who rely on telephone communication and faxing. That said, any big change is bound to have some impact on systems, and rural locations always seem to be the last to benefit from modernisation.
Smaller internet companies like Wave Internet own all of our mast sites and do not rent public masts so we have no timescale issues in providing services. The technology is not the same and therefore we already offer VOIP in additional to our broadband.
What makes Wave Internet different from the rest?
At Wave Internet we own all of our mast sites and do not rent public masts so we have no pressure to oversubscribe our services and operate a policy of limited numbers per mast in order to ensure the best possible broadband experience for all.
Evolved to address the dissatisfaction experienced by individuals and businesses with poor service provided by giant telecoms plc’s, we are able to provide you with high speed internet access than are currently available with conventional fixed line solutions.
With Wave Internet we can supply you with fantastic broadband services for both residential and business addresses and there are many benefits including:
Greater upload speeds – especially important if you use any cloud based services or remotely back up your data.
Fast overall internet speeds
No monthly line rental fees, reducing the overall cost of the package
Voice over internet phone systems (VoIP) – cheaper calls, flexible and adaptable contact numbers, no line rental.
Reliable, fast response times – all of our masts are in this local area, and so are our engineers!
Guest networks for friends and visitors – give your customers access to the internet without them being able to access everything else on the network.
If you live in a rural location or a very hard to reach area and you believe your broadband services are not exceeding your expectations, contact Wave Internet today for a free site survey and we will help your broadband to get up to speed!
The history of the telephone is longer than you think, it actually reaches back to 1672 when a man called Robert Hooke discovered that sound could travel along a wire or string from a mouthpiece to an earpiece. But it wasn’t until the mid-eighteenth century when this technology started to be explored.
Arguably there has been more progress made in telecommunications in the last three decades than in the last three centuries, one of those innovations has been VOIP technology. In this article, we look at why VOIP has been so successful in recent decades and consider the future of making calls with VOIP.
A Brief History of VOIP
VOIP was developed in 1995 as a way for businesses (primarily) to save money on long-distance phone calls. It was discovered that cheap or free Internet calls could be made between servers that drastically cut conventional telecommunications costs.
From 1996 onwards VOIP infrastructure and services have continued to expand with voicemail applications, multiple devices calling capabilities, and video conferencing services. Into the 21st century and companies realised they could transfer information over IP as well, further enhancing VOIP capability.
Today it’s unthinkable for businesses to operate without a VOIP system in place. VOIP offers high-quality reliable connectivity at a low cost and also syncs nicely with emerging technologies such as IoT and UC. The present rise of VOIP can be easily likened to the Internet boom of the early 90s.
VOIP: An Overview
VOIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. Unlike legacy phone networks, VOIP turns the voice signals into digital ones and sends them through the Internet to a target server. VOIP technology uses Packet-Switched Protocols meaning that voice and data are sent in signal “packets.”
Companies predominantly use VOIP networks today because they integrate both phone and data services into an existing network. Apart from being cheaper than legacy systems, VOIP allows companies to transmit information and data files as well.
Using a VOIP network is virtually indistinguishable from using a traditional telephone line. The VOIP devices are plugged into an Internet connection and digital signals are sent instead of electrical signals, this makes it possible to dial and contact anyone on the global network.
How VOIP Works
VOIP is the 21st Century version of a global telephone network. Although landline telephones and legacy networks are still used there is a clear trend towards mobile networks and VOIP services – so how does VOIP technology actually work?
In a way, it is exactly the same as recording your voice onto your computer. To do this you talk into a microphone and your computer records a limited frequency range using CODECS. The computer might also compress this file to save space. VOIP works the same way but it uses more sophisticated CODECs.
The audio recorded by the computer is then grouped together into “data packets” which are transmitted over the IP network. These data packets contain around 10 milliseconds of audio. The same server protocol is used for VOIP as other data transmissions.
The Benefits of VOIP
It’s clear that VOIP networks are the future, and here’s why.
Because VOIP uses an Internet connection and transmits data digitally it slashed the costs of using multiple phone-ins on a legacy system. Internet service providers will usually offer businesses a “call bundle” with a discount on their VOIP service.
Higher Call Quality
Unlike traditional telephone lines that can suffer from interference, VOIP services use a strong and stable Internet connection. There is little chance of interference during important calls. VOIP telephone systems also offer HD voice for excellent clarity and crisp audio.
A VOIP service can be built around the needs of your business and tailored to you. You can add thousands of users to your network at no extra cost. The only limit to this is your bandwidth which can be modified separately at the router or with the service provider.
The aim of any business is to grow and become more profitable but that isn’t easy on a traditional network that requires more investment to add users. VOIP networks don’t have this issue, they can grow flexibly with your business at no extra cost.
The Future of Making Calls
The Future is looking up for VOIP networks, mainly because so much innovation is happening in the communications sector. New technologies are arriving such as AI and Machine Learning, and the increased use of the Internet of Things (IoT) and Unified Communications (UC).
As it happens VOIP systems link up nicely with these emerging technologies. Take the IoT for example, there is an ever-growing number of smart devices linking to one another and data such as calendar updates and messages can be sent over the VOIP networks. VOIP is also better at connecting devices.
VOIP also links up nicely with UC which describes the process of bringing all communication resources together for maximum productivity. In the coming years, more communication and data will be sent via Web and video conferencing, something VOIP is made to facilitate.
Get ahead with Wave
With all this in mind, it makes sense to get ahead of the curve and invest your business in VOIP technology today. There isn’t a lot to think about, VOIP technology is not only cheaper and more efficient, but it is also the future of integrated business networks – so why pass up on a golden opportunity.
If you are still invested in multiple phone lines to run your business you are paying too much for your communications network, you are also on the legacy side of technology instead of riding a WAVE to the future. You can switch to Wave Internet quickly and adapt your package according to business needs.
Wave Internet doesn’t only cater to business customers, you can also benefit from VOIP as a domestic user. Think of the future, the Internet of things, unified communications, artificial intelligence and machine learning. This is a rising tide of possibilities for you, so ready your board in the water and get in touch.
Use of the internet is an integral part of our daily lives whether at work, home or in a public space and as the world becomes even more reliable on internet usage for such things as services, grocery deliveries and even medication, a fast and reliable internet provider has never been more appropriate.
But what most people don’t realise is that the internet infrastructure itself is a very old implementation that was invented as a secure means of communication during the Cold War over an even older phone line system, and since then, apart from fibre optic upgrades, it has changed very little. Because of its age, the phone line system is now becoming outdated and BT is planning a switch-off that could affect your business.
Fortunately, there is good news but before we get into the details, some key considerations include:
What is the Switch Off?
New Tech, New Solution
Business Packages for Me
The switch-off is a planned event that is going to replace traditional ISDN and PSTN business communication methodologies with a completely online VoIP system while there is new technology available that offers completely tailored and relevant solutions for any size business with no abhorrent and outdated contracts.
What is the Switch Off?
By 2025, BT will have switched off all of its ISDN and PSTN internet communication systems. This is set to affect over 2 million small businesses in the UK that rely on the outdated technology for their day-to-day activities as BT implements a fully online Voice Over IP system that will mostly affect those who rely on telephone communication and faxing.
Voice Over IP is a web-based form of communication that uses the internet as a means of digital communication rather than traditional copper wire methods used for fax machines and landline telephones. However, this doesn’t mean anything bad for your business, in fact, it means quite the opposite.
You will have to adapt to a VoIP system but this is relatively cheap, costs less per month to run and provides superior quality over standard phone systems. Adaptors can also be purchased cheap and easily installed so that fax machines can operate via the VoIP system, therefore, benefiting from the faster speed and improved quality of fibre optic internet systems over the centuries-old copper wire Public Switched Telephone System.
New Tech, New Solution
Although VoIP can be integrated into the PSTN and ISDN systems, the technology is old and outdated therefore a new system is needed. Wave Internet offers a truly 21st Century solution to the 19th Century problem of fast, reliable and secure communication. Using microwave technology, at Wave Internet we can offer stunningly fast wireless internet connections to urban and rural regions alike.
We don’t mean Wi-Fi when we say “wireless”, our technology is much more advanced than that. Our wireless internet data is transmitted directly from one of our data distribution sites (that are connected to the fibre optic network) to your property, home or business without the need for any wires, just a small receiver dish similar to subscribed TV:
The use of microwave transmission means that no speed is lost and connection integrity is among some of the highest that modern technology allows. Because of this, being located far from an internet exchange is no longer an issue and we are able to provide superfast broadband wherever you need it, whenever you need it, regardless of location.
Wave Internet also offers superior advantages over other internet providers such as Sky, Virgin and BT, since they all still operate using wired technology which is prone to outages, exponential transmission drop off and requires a phone line billing system as an extra expense which can cost around £200 per year:
We also generously offer a free router to all customers who take up a no-contract subscription no matter what tier they choose, even our most moderately priced package.
Business packages with the latest in broadband technology
Despite our impressive technology, generous savings and super reliable service, where we really shine is offering the best packages to our customers that reflect fair and accurate pricing with no hidden charges or extraneous expenses.
While we offer exceptional value for money with our family plans, we simply cannot be beaten with our comprehensive business tiers that offer everything a small to medium enterprise needs.
Transparent information and billing
Obscured technology and annual increases
Long and locked in contracts
Extra charges for exceeding limits
Exceptional customer service
Outsourced and poor customer service
For businesses, our most reasonably priced Silver package starts at £49.99 per month for a guaranteed 20mbps download speed. More expensive options take business needs into consideration such as static IP addresses (required for remote access) and VoIP integration options with guaranteed download speeds of 65mbps and even 100mbps which can be discussed with our professional team.
Connection is guaranteed even in the most rural locations* since phone lines and exchanges are not required as with traditional providers. This means that you will always have access to fast and reliable internet service that has been designed with modern-day communication systems in mind such as mesh systems and wireless technologies that will ensure a future proof implementation and guarantee a smooth transition into a 21st Century comms system when the switch-off has completed in less than 4 years.
*Wave internet currently only operates in the Lancashire and Greater Manchester areas but we are pleased to announce that we are expanding our services to include many more locations.
When you think of the term ‘Shop Local’ you often think of the small coffee shop around the corner or the friend who has turned her hobby into a business. What you may not be aware of in the term applies to all aspects of the business including your internet provider.
The past few years have seen an increase in local shopping as people become more aware of the mass production process and want to know where their products come from.
Just like food and locally produced products, new technology has facilitated the use of local internet providers that can provide a fast and reliable connection with superior speed, connection and service over large corporations.
Similar to any other product, choosing a local provider means a tailored experience that results in a more reliable experience for the customer and the technology used allows for an internet connection in places that other providers often can’t or won’t provide.
Covid-19 and Internet Providers
The current pandemic has changed the world in many ways and the way we shop has been affected on a large scale. Since ‘stay home’ orders have been strictly enforced, online retail has boomed and has seen a 76% increase over the past 12 months.
Because of this, many local retailers have welcomed the opportunity to make the jump to online service in order to stay afloat during the pandemic as fewer and fewer people are able to make it to stores in person.
However, many large corporate internet providers that don’t have the infrastructure for reliable service in rural areas may force a contract on a small business owner that isn’t necessary, and are known for their terrible customer service. As of 2020, only 46% of Virgin customers stated that they were happy with their broadband service in a report issued by Ofcom shortly before the Covid-19 pandemic struck the UK.
The Problem with ISPs
Being able to access the internet is almost a basic human right as the medium is used for almost every aspect of modern life. In 2020 alone, approximately 700,000 school children suffered because they did not have access to the internet in order to take advantage of online lessons while they were at home during the pandemic.
The cost of a good and reliable internet connection doesn’t come cheap and many of the major companies will force unreasonable contracts upon customers that require them to take up extra services that they don’t want or need in order to access internet services.
Virgin, Sky and BT offer their internet packages as standalone products but at a premium price. Their packages are tailored for customers to subscribe to their digital TV services and landline installation as well. These add unnecessary charges to monthly bills.
Sky TV’s cheapest package, for example, costs £43 per month with a £69 setup fee over an 18-month contract and while it includes broadband, which is quite slow, also forces the customer to take Sky TV as well.
BT has also announced that they will be switching off their ISDN and PSTN services in 2025 and moving their phone technology completely online to a VoIP system. This is expected to affect over 2 million small companies in the UK that rely on telephone communication as a part of their day-to-day business.
While it will still be possible to send and receive data using the copper phone line system with VoIP integration, the technology itself is outdated and a modern method is required to bring a business into the 21st century.
Wireless internet has arrived as the only solution to the outdated methods employed by all major internet providers. This doesn’t refer to Wi-Fi, which sends a radio signal from a router that is connected to the phone line system to your mobile device, but rather completely wireless data transmission that provides wireless broadband without the phone line.
Wave Internet uses wireless fibre technology that utilizes microwaves to send data from distribution sites to your home or business with no loss of speed. Distribution sites are connected to the fibre optic infrastructure from where data received is transmitted without the need for a wired connection to your property, but rather is received via a small dish affixed to the outside of a building.
Unlike standard providers, Wave Internet can be tailored for home use, business use or even home office use. Comprehensive packages have been designed to take into account the different requirements for all types of users.
No longer will you be tied to an unreasonable contract with unreliable connection performance and even worse customer service. The nature of wireless internet technology means that a strong and reliable connection can be maintained at any site whether urban or rural.
Ranging from 12mbps, which is faster than Sky’s most expensive package, up to 40mbps, our home packages have been designed for all family sizes from couples and small families up to large families who like to game and use home offices.
For businesses of all kinds, including rural offices, industrial, commercial and hospitality sectors we offer excellent and reliable solutions ranging from25mbps up to 65mbps.
All of our packages, whether home or business do not require any phone lines or phone line installation, can be cancelled at any time and come with a free router. In addition, our business packages offer future-proof digital VoIP services which will get you prepared for the 2025 switch off.
Wave internet currently only operates in the Lancashire and Greater Manchester areas but we are pleased to announce that we will be expanding our services to include many more locations.
You have probably heard the term before, but what actually is a VPN? We have created this handy guide to give you all the information on why you may need a VPN and how to use one.
What is a VPN?
VPN stands for ‘Virtual Private Network’. It enables users to send and receive data via a secure connection to another network on the internet. Essentially, a tunnel is created between your private connection and a secure server, which protects your data.
For example, if you are trying to access a server in another country to stream files, make back-ups to the cloud, access websites, download movies, or play games, a VPN will help you do so securely. They are often used by individuals, schools, and businesses to access or prevent content being shared with certain countries and protect from malicious attacks. Anyone can use them that has access to the internet.
They are essential in the age of cyber hacking and invasion of privacy. A VPN can be installed on a mobile or computer device. It will help protect you when using the internet to access private or public servers.
How does a VPN work?
When you connect your device to the internet, it connects to either a wireless or ethernet cable. While connected, your device will send small clusters of data that indicate what you want to do on the internet.
For example, you may log in to your blog dashboard to share a new article. This information is collected by the website, which will then respond by sending back data packets. These data packets can give away a lot of personal information about you to your internet provider, and potential hackers, without the right protection. Information that can be shared includes your precise location, which websites you visit, and any information you input into the websites.
It can also detect your behaviour and location, which can result in blocking access to certain websites. Content may be restricted due to local UK government regulations. Using a VPN will set up a secure tunnel and allow you to access this limited content. This will mask the IP address you are using through the server. Not only will this mean you can access the data, but you can access it securely as your location, data, and behaviour will be hidden.
The main function of a VPN will help you hide your location so that the website does not detect when you are attempting to access the content. Thus, there will be no limitation.
For example, if you on a trip to Istanbul and want to watch Netflix, but the show is not available in Turkey, you will need a virtual network. It will change your address to your home address or a country where the show is available so that you can watch it.
How to set up a VPN
You will need safe and secure wireless broadband. You will also need your chosen device using Windows, macOS, Linux, Android or iOS.
It is simple to set up an account when you have chosen your preferred provider. They will only typically need your email address and payment.
Step by step instructions for installing a VPN
If you are looking to set up a VPN account to access content safely from anywhere, here are the typical steps.
Choose a service: you will first need to research which VPN provider is most suitable to your needs, budget, and security preferences. It may be ideal to go with a paid service as they will offer more security when accessing limited content. For example, if you are looking to use a VPN for your business, you will need super reliable and secure access. You will not want to put any of your business data or private information at risk.
Signing up: the next step will be when you sign up for your chosen service. Whether you have opted for free or paid, you will need to hand over a payment method for monthly or annual payments. Then, they might ask for a name, email, and other personal information. Some only ask for your email to increase anonymity.
Download and install the service: you will need to download and install the chosen service, which you will be able to do once you have signed up. This might be through an app or computer software download.
Open the software and sign in: once the software is installed, you will need to sign in and choose your preferred settings.
Test it: when everything is set up, you will need to test your VPN. You can use VPN service checker to check the speed and reliability. To get the most out of your VPN service, ensure a fast broadband connection, especially in rural areas for quicker download and streaming speeds. Wifi Boosters are always handy to have!
With the VPN set up, you can enjoy fast, reliable, and secure content from any website.
Are VPNs legal?
VPN use is legal in most countries. But, there are some countries where these types of networks are forbidden. See the following lists to see if you are able to use in your country or a country you are visiting.
Using a VPN is illegal in:
United Arab Emirates
Some countries are currently taking steps to make VPNs illegal, which includes Bahrain, Egypt, Cuba, North Korea, Libya, Myanmar, Syria, Turkmenistan, and Vietnam. Before using a VPN in a new country, always check the government laws.
VPNs are legal for everyone to use in the UK, as well as any countries not listed above. They are ideal for personal as well as business use. For example, you may be looking for wifi solutions for your hotel or B&B in the UK; you can install reliable wifi and VPNs for you and your guests to enjoy.
Anonymity and VPN’s
On the internet, there is no such thing as being completely anonymous. Using VPNs in a residential setting or a business setup is completely safe, but it will not guarantee that your name or information will not be shared. VPNs are used to increase privacy as opposed to making your identity anonymous. A VPN provides a degree of privacy and anonymity but should not be relied upon to provide absolute anonymity or privacy.
If you want to increase your anonymity, you can mask your IP address, which will make your location and identity unknown. Yet, the VPN cannot be responsible for hiding your complete identity as your information may be stored in software that your VPN is not used for.
Misconceptions about VPN’s
There are numerous myths around VPNs, here are a few of the most common…
Hackers use them to access your bank account
It is essential to know that you cannot use a VPN when accessing your bank or any other personal financial information. No bank in the world should allow non-secure connections that do not provide location information. Seeing as VPNs withhold your precise location, a bank will not allow you to access the services due to a lack of identity.
VPN’s can protect you from computer viruses
This is not true, and you should not rely on them to protect you from malware issues. A VPN works to encrypt data, not protect it. Before installing the virtual network, you should ensure to have virus protection installed for your own safety.
a VPN can protect you from being tracked online.
While many VPNs services can hide your location from websites and keep your location safe, some online services need your location to function. For example, online banking or social media platforms need your location in order to function and provide you with the service. It is their way of guaranteeing you are a real person and are the person who owns the account.
A VPN can slow down your internet connection.
In some cases, it might. But, this is not the case for everyone, especially if you have a good wireless connection. Fast broadband will offer you a quicker download and upload time, which will make your VPN work smoothly will delay or interruption.
How to choose a VPN
VPNs come in all shapes and sizes, and you can choose one depending on your preferences. There are high-end paid options or free services. Before deciding on what service you want, you should read reviews such as Trust Pilot. There, you will find honest opinions from users of the service. It will indicate the pros and cons of each provider.
For school broadband and VPNs in public settings, it may be better to have a paid-for option. They often provide more security and privacy, which will protect all users of computers and technological devices. You can monitor your information easier if using the network for individual use, which means you may be able to be safe enough from a free service.
If you are totally unsure of what to look for when choosing a VPN provider, here are a few tips.
Look for encryption protocol. These perform security-related functions and applies cryptographic methods, which offer protection and speed.
See if they use an ad blocker service. Some VPN providers offer ad blocking services, which can maximize your download or viewing experience of the content you want to access. Ad blockers enhance your experience as well as preventing malicious code, viruses, and other dangers from infecting your device.
IP address ghosting. Other premium features from VPN providers may include the ability to ghost your address so that your service provider does not know you are using a VPN.
Extra storage. Some VPN providers may offer you extra storage in your package, which will allow you to store extra files, photos, and videos. It often acts as a bonus feature so you can get more out of your money.
Written assurance. Written assurance will help you understand that your server logs are never shared with outside parties. This offers more security and privacy of your data.
Your chosen VPN will be down to your personal preference. Look for extra bonus features if you want more for your money. Or look for written assurance to guarantee the complete privacy of your data and personal information.
A VPN is ideal if you want to create a secure tunnel between your device and a blocked server. By using a VPN, you can change your location so that you can access limited data, such as movie streams and games. They can be used on a range of devices, so long as you have an internet connection. A reliable and super fast wireless broadband connection will maximize your online experience, as there will be limited delays and interruptions. Although VPNs cannot guarantee anoynomity, they will help you mask your location and personal data so that you can enjoy any content from anywhere.
Have you wondered if it’s possible to get broadband without a phone line? Absolutely! It ultimately depends on the type of broadband you have as to whether you can separate from signing up without an active phone line.
A broadband connection through the telephone lines is an outdated infrastructure that is quickly being replaced by modern technologies. Most UK providers are still using the BT-owned Openreach along old copper telephone wires, but this is no longer your only option.
Some providers combine this into their prices offering ‘free line-rental’ but you can be sure that you are still paying for an unnecessary phone line.
Why do so many companies force you to have a phone line?
When broadband began to replace dial-up connection in the early 2000’s, it followed the same model of connecting your computer to the internet via telephone wires. With so many telephone wires intact, many broadband providers continue to offer options that forcibly require a phone line in their package to reduce installing new wires. However, fast forward to 2020 and there are great new technologies able to offer broadband connections without a phone line now.
Unfortunately, some companies haven’t moved quickly enough to offer another solution even though the share of households who use a landline telephone is going down exponentially.
Since the era of the mobile phone, there is no longer a need to own a landlaine. Many people opt to using a mobile only, natually avoiding those rather annoying sales and spam calls.
So what are these new internet breakthroughs? Below are some options that allow you to forego the phone line and purchase a broadband-only package.
A cable connection requires a fibre cabinet in the area that uses coaxial cables to connect to this cabinet and provide a high-speed internet connection. The most well-known cable provider is Virgin.
Cable veers away from using the copper wire telephone connection, allowing customers to purchase broadband without a phone line. Check the options available in your specific location and always read reviews before choosing a provider.
Fibre Optic is one of the newest forms of broadband connection. It is still developing in its infancy, and generally is not an option seen very often. This method requires a fibre optic cable to be installed and comes in multiple forms. Only one option allows users to opt-out of a phone line:
FTTP (Fibre-to-the-Premises). As the name suggests, FTTP waives the usage of copper wires by using fibre cables entirely. From the fibre cabinet to the premise, only fibre optic cables are used which make it the costliest method. This is also referred to as a full-fibre connection. Keep in mind that most providers who offer this still include a phone line!
Broadband on the go: This broadband connection is available in multiple forms: a dongle, a portable Wi-Fi/Mi-Fi box, a car Wi-Fi box, and several other options.
This option is excellent for temporary broadband with short-term contacts and pay-as-you-go plans. However, it can be slower and significantly more expensive than a fixed-line broadband connection secured to your home. For locations that are more rural and don’t have the infrastructure to offer any other type of broadband effective, this is a great alternative.
Mobile broadband can also be limited to multiple devices and easily accessible to other users. Regardless, it is an available option for those looking for a broadband connection without a landline contract.
Using radio signals, a wireless modem/router is connected to either the cable phone wires or fibre optic cables to transmit internet to Wi-Fi enabled devices.
These internet-radio signals are picked up and then used to access the internet. Wi-Fi is expansive, convenient and allows for many devices to be connected to the internet at once.
Choosing to relinquish yourself from the wires and cabled services opens up another realm of possibility – satellite broadband. Widely used amongst more remote users, the internet is transmitted wirelessly through a satellite dish.
Because of this, a phone landline is no longer necessary or required for satellite broadband service. Using similar infrastructures to GPS, satellite TV and weather forecasting, this wireless broadband offers a stable and uniform connection. It is the perfect service for hard-to-reach, rural locations. This is the new age of broadband as new satellites are launched into space.
Wave Internet Satellite Broadband
Wave Internet services rural areas of the UK with superfast broadband anywhere and anytime. Wave Internet is one of the only small companies on the market who services this niche area, typically helping internet users with the poorest internet connections.
Wave offers three packages: residential (starting from £29.99/month), business (£49.99/month) and education (£49.99/month) to ensure the best coverage for your specialised needs.
No phone line is necessary with any packages, compared to other traditional services. You can save over £200 per year choosing Wave Internet, and you have the option to add a VOIP line.
In the coming years, there are sure to be more competitors on the scene for the growing market, but Wave offers quality benefits such as a superior customer service team with UK only call centres.
Flexible Contracts: Where other providers always force customers into rigid and long-term contracts, Wave offers customised options tailored to your needs. They offer super flexible service, giving users the choice to stay long term.
Unlimited Usage: No hidden or extra fees, or data usage limitations, for going over allowances like with other providers.
No Phone Line Needed: There is no need for landline charges when Wave uses new, state-of-the-art technology.
Wave offers flexible VOIP phone systems to users if phone services are needed.
Quality Service: Instead of funneling their services through overseas call centres, Wave has local engineers within 40 minutes of their beam points who respond rapidly fast.
With the rise of broadband connectivity, the landline game is changing as we speak. Though companies continue to force customers to purchase phone lines due to existing telephone wires and obligated package deals, landlines are projected to cease to exist in 2025. Active phone lines are proving to be dangerous, as scammers are calling people, imitating their broadband internet service providers, and tricking them into sending large sums of money to avoid having their broadband “cancelled.”
Mobile phones and Wi-Fi connective devices continue to rise, moving internet users farther away from telephone cables. New services are currently popping up to replace traditional methods, like VoIP, Voice over Internet Protocol, or a cloud phone system.
Benefits of VoIP
Think of providers like Skype or Zoom, who offer their users an option to pay a fixed fee and make a call anywhere in the world via the internet. VoIP phone services provide their customers with a similar experience: if you have an established internet connection, you can make any call without the need for local phone service.
Your IP address is your Internet Protocol address; if you ever wondered, this is how devices communicate with each other via the internet. It’s the same concept with VoIP phone services, which offers users the ability to use their IP address to make phone calls. With this new technology, as people across the globe switch providers to broadband connective service providers, VoIP has the potential to render traditional phone services completely obsolete relatively soon.
How do I replace my line with VoIP phone services?
Typically, VoIP is offered to broadband internet users in their business package. Wave Internet, however, offers a VoIP service package for the home! By taking advantage of the internet, Wave’s VoIP phone service allows their internet users to make quality phone calls at a fraction of the price of obsolete landlines.
Wave’s VoIP services come at an £7.99/month addition to your normal broadband internet cost. There are no connection fees, or rounding up to the next minute, and no bundles. It is also significantly easier to block spam callers through VoIP services.
In fact, the UK Prime Minister is trying to invest in more widespread, faster internet access to boost the UK’s productivity and infrastructure. Rishi Sunak, the UK Chancellor, has announced in his 2020 Spending Review to allocate £5bn for his “UK Gigabit Broadband Programme,” in order to “deliver faster broadband for over 5 million premises across the UK” by the end of 2025.
Lockdown 2.0 is well underway and if we have learned anything from the last one, it’s that we’re going to need plenty of distractions to ensure we get through it with our sanity intact. Not being able to see the people you love or live life as you would like is frustrating, but even more so if you have nothing to occupy yourself with while you’re at home.
That being said, depending too much on things like apps, software and gaming, can mean slowing down your bandwidth and having trouble when you need it most. Your data speed has more to do with your bandwidth usage than many people realise. In some cases, your wifi may slow down so much that platforms you would usually use easily become unusable. It gets even worse if you have more than one person trying to use the internet at the same time.
Don’t jump to conclusions and call your internet service provider with a barrage of insults just yet – it’s probably not their fault! To get back to streaming, gaming, and watching things like a pro during lockdown 2.0, you need to address the things eating up your bandwidth.
So, what is using up all your Bandwidth?
Streaming can be one of the main culprits when it comes to these pastimes. Netflix, YouTube, and Prime all require bandwidth to ensure that you can watch high definition playback of your favourite shows without any issues or delays. Nobody wants to deal with the dreaded ‘buffering’ signal, do they?
Each service does offer the ability to downgrade your streaming to save on bandwidth, so that could be worth a look if you feel this may be one of the main sources of your problems. Hitting Control+Alt+Shift+S allows you to bring up a menu that can override the quality settings. Netflix ensures smooth streaming is by toggling its video quality based on how much bandwidth your internet connection has, so sometimes it will do it automatically. If you make changes manually they will come into play within 8 hours.
If you tend to stream in other ways, such as playing games on platforms like Twitch, for example, then you need to remember that this is also going to take up a substantial amount of space.
The speeds required to enjoy a solid gaming experience will depend on a variety of factors, from the games you are playing to the consoles you are using. If you’re going to game seamlessly then you need to make sure you have enough bandwidth free and that you even increase it, if needs be. Do your research before buying a new game or console to be sure you can handle it. If you’ve already been experiencing issues, checking out the bandwidth required by the game may give you insight into why things haven’t been working the way they should.
Downloads consume your bandwidth and can slow down your internet speed substantially. Whether you’re downloading shows to watch on your device without an internet connection or something else, you should be aware of this before you begin a download. Depending on the size of the download, it could take hours.
As with downloading files, uploading files such as Youtube videos will take up a proportion of your bandwidth. Being prepared to take your activities offline while this happens may be your only option.
File sharing is one of the biggest bandwidth-hogging activities out there, for instance, when you use a peer to peer file sharing system. Many people try to upload their files and download at the fastest rates possible, but this will dominate your wifi without fail. Whether you’re transferring music or movies, remember that you could also be open to legal action from intellectual property owners.
Figuring out what the problem is
Use Your Router
See if you can use your router to figure out what the issue is. You can check your IP addresses, MAC addresses, and the current connection status so you can see exactly what is connected to your network at the moment and what you could potentially do without.
If you’re still none the wiser, certain apps could help. Apps like Glasswire can give you a more accurate insight into how much you’re downloading and uploading over minutes, hours, days, weeks, and months so you get a feel for whether you’re uploading a bit too much. Bandwidth+, Netguard, and BitMeter are other options you can look into. Being aware of what’s really going on can help you to make a plan for future uploads, downloads, and anything else you want to do.
Scan For Malware
Malware can sometimes be the culprit when you’re using up too much bandwidth, so get some software in place and scan for it. Stay alert and keep your computer and other devices clean and running smoothly.
Make Sure You’re Getting What You Pay For
In some cases, you may not be getting the promised speeds that you have paid for. Use speed testing websites to see if your uploads and downloads match up to what you’re paying for. Running tests at different times of day across different sites will give you a better idea of what’s going on. Ookla Speedtest can give you an accurate analysis of your speeds.
COVID-19 and broadband usage
Could it also be affected by high usage due to Covid-19?
Christmas is going to involve more virtual living room family visits this year, but can the infrastructure hold up on the biggest day of the year? We found some interesting statistics on the recent publication on internet usage from Ofcom.
Adult internet visitors on average spent 36 minutes longer per day online during April compared to January!
The next generation of consoles to be released is going to ensure a spike in gaming and streaming, which according to Openreach is the major culprit of usage. The zoom calls don’t seem to be the biggest worry in the industry.
The release of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X is no doubt going to put a strain on the internet. The size of the game’s data being downloaded are huge as the Playstation, for example, has no DVD slot and is 100% downloaded.
Let’s brace ourselves over the festive period and hope the internet doesn’t, well, break!
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We all know just how frustrating it can be when you’re experiencing slowdown issues with your home wifi. No one enjoys seeing the movie they’re trying to watch drop in quality before continually buffering. It’s annoying but what can be done about it when you find yourself dealing with these problems more often than you’d like?
Well, there are some options out there so you shouldn’t feel as if it’s something that you simply have to put up with because that’s not the case. There are lots of small changes and improvements that can be made in order to boost your home wifi signal; it’s all about finding the solutions that work for you. Read on now to find out about what you should be doing to improve your wifi performance.
Upgrade the router if it’s old
Age can be a significant factor when it comes to improving the wifi signal in your home. First of all, old buildings can present problems when it comes to achieving a sufficient wifi signal, as well as homes that have thick walls. But the age of the router itself is also something that you should take into consideration.
Old wifi routers tend to have quite low bandwidth capacities. You don’t necessarily need to know why that’s important, but it is. It means your wifi speed will be lower than it should be. So if you want to expand the reach of your wifi and improve its speed, it might make sense to upgrade your router if the current one is old.
Consider a Mesh Wifi System
Even if the router you choose to replace your old one with is new, you might not get the reach you’re looking for. That’s why using a mesh wifi system might be something that’s worth considering. This kind of system uses multiple routers throughout the home that work in tandem with one another.
This means that they’re able to extend and expand the coverage in your home, routing the signal to where it needs to be and covering the entire home in a network signal that meets your daily requirements. You’ll have to invest a little more money to get all of this set up, but it’s a system that’s proven to work.
Or Use Wifi Range Extenders
If you don’t think you need to go as far as setting up a whole new mesh wifi system, it might be a good idea to simply use one or multiple wifi range extenders. These simply plugin and start performing right away. You can place them in parts of the home where you’ve noticed that the wifi signal tends to be weakest.
When the extender is operational, you’ll notice that the wifi signal should be better in that specific area of the home. It doesn’t involve any new routers or anything like that. They don’t always perform as well as you would like them to though and the mesh system discussed above definitely yields better results.
Use an External Antenna
If your wifi router currently has an antenna attached to it, it might not be offering the signal that you’re looking for. That’s what the antenna is there to do, but you can actually achieve better performance by investing in an external antenna that sits alongside the one that’s currently attached to your router.
You can buy these antennas pretty cheaply and they then connect to your router and start boosting the signal throughout your home. It’s a small upgrade but it’s one that might make a positive difference for you. You can choose a directional antenna if there’s a particular direction you want to send the signal in.
Check and tweak the quality of service settings
There’s a range of settings that come with your wifi router, and it’s a good idea to take a look at these. They’re known as Quality of Service settings and they dictate how much bandwidth certain applications are using. It could be the case that these settings are out of line with how you want the wifi to be used.
When that’s the case, it means that your wifi usage suffers while there’s excess bandwidth being dedicated to other things that you don’t need or want to use. By changing the settings, you can shift the priorities and give priority to certain tasks, such as video calls of wherever your main priorities lie.
Secure the Network to Prevent Others Using It
If you want to get the most out of your wifi network, you need to make sure that you’re the only one using it. If your network is not properly secured, other people might have access to it and start using it without your permission. That’s going to be an additional drain on your network and prevent you from using it to the fullest.
Stronger password security and things like that will ensure that people can’t just hop onto your network whenever they feel like it, so that’s something to explore. The best type of password protection to put in place is WPA2 password. Once you’ve done that, it’ll be much harder for any unauthorised people to invade your network.
Try Manually Selecting a Channel
There are many different channels that wifi signals can utilize, and this is to ensure that different signals in the area don’t all try to use one channel, which would result in delays and slowdowns. If you’re having problems with your wifi, you should see if you can select a channel manually. A simple change might make a big difference.
Modern modems have the ability to switch channels relatively easily. It doesn’t need to be a complicated process. Simply switch if you notice that there’s a problem with slowing speeds, and then assess whether the channel you switched to offers better performance or not. You’ll eventually find the right one for your home.
Switch to 5GHz
If you’re able to take a look at the frequency on offer, you might want to change it. You might have a 2.4GHz and a 5GHz frequency available. If you do have that choice, it always makes much more sense to choose the 5GHz frequency option because this is going to offer better levels of performance.
The great thing about 5GHz is that it offers faster speeds while also experiencing a lot less interference from external networks and things of that kind. So if you’ve been using 2.4GHz, now is the time to change that. You should notice a difference as soon as you make the switch.
Put the Router in the Right Place
Where you choose to locate the router in your home will have a big impact on how it performs. Of course, in some instances, you might not have much scope to move it. But even small movements can make a difference. For example, you should avoid keeping it too close to other electrical devices because this will only cause more problems.
Ideally, you’ll want to make sure that the router has plenty of space around it. Having it stand against a wall, especially thick walls is a bad idea. Give it some room if you can and this should help to improve the performance it offers. In terms of which room to put the router in, the most central area of the home is usually the best place for it.
Update the Firmware Your Router Runs On
Updating the firmware on which your router runs is something that’s definitely advisable too. If the firmware hasn’t been updated for a long time, there might be vulnerabilities and performance issues present. Whenever an update is released, it’s because there are changes that the developer feels need to be made.
As well as better performance, upgraded firmware will also patch any security issues that might be present. That’s why you should always try to keep the firmware updated, even if you aren’t experiencing any problems such as slowdowns or performance-related problems. They’re always important.
Compare the Wireless and Wired Internet Performances
Before you assume that the problem is with your wifi signal, you should also make sure that the wired performance that your internet service provider is offering is strong. If it’s also offering a weak performance, that suggests that there are bigger underlying problems and that it’s not a problem with the wireless wifi signal at all.
You should contact your internet service provider if you find that the wired connection is also poor in terms of performance. And switching to another service might be the best way forward as well. Wifi coverage is an issue if the wired connection does perform well and your wifi performs better when you’re closer to the modem.
As you can see, there are lots of ways in which you can take steps to improve your home’s wifi performance. If you’ve been having struggles and it’s frustrating you on a daily basis, it’s definitely a good idea to try some of the ideas discussed here. You’ll eventually find a few approaches that work for you.
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