Coronavirus: How to improve your internet speed when working from home according to Ofcom

[ad_1]

With millions of people across the country staying at home amid the UK coronavirus lockdown, broadband and mobile networks have found themselves under increased demand. 

From remote working to home schooling, the number of households attempting to access the internet at the same time is causing connections to perform at slower speeds. 

But, there are things people can do to ensure everyone in the home gets the bandwidth they need, whether it is for video streaming or virtual calls.


On Wednesday, media regulator Ofcom published a list of seven ways people can reduce the strain on internet providers as part of its “Stay Connected” campaign, which has been launched alongside BT, Sky, O2 and Virgin Media.

“Families across the country are going online together this week, often juggling work and keeping children busy at the same time,” Melanie Dawes, the chief executive of Ofcom, said.

“So we’re encouraging people to read our advice on getting the most from their broadband, home phones and mobiles.”

Here are seven ways you can improve your internet speed during self-isolation.

Use your landline or wifi calls if you can

Ofcom reports that because more people are making calls using their mobile network during the day, people might find they get a more reliable connection using a landline. 

If you do need to use your mobile, it suggests using your settings to turn on “wifi calling”.

“Some smartphones and mobile packages allow your phone to make calls over your broadband network, which often provides the best sound quality and also helps reduce demand on the mobile network,” Ofcom says.

Alternatively, voice calls can also be made over the internet using apps like Facetime, Skype or WhatsApp.

Move your router clear of other devices

Another way to help boost your internet speed is to make sure your router is as far away as possible from other devices including cordless phones, baby monitors, halogen lamps, dimmer switches, stereos and computer speakers and televisions.

Ofcom adds that microwaves can also reduce wifi signals, so try not to use them when you’re making video calls, watching HD videos or doing something important online. 

Lower the demands on your connection

The more devices attached to your wifi, the lower the speed you get,Ofcom says.

Devices like tablets and smartphones typically work in the background, so Ofcom suggests switching wifi reception off on these devices when you’re not using them. 

“You might also want to manage your family’s online activity, so that different people aren’t carrying out data-heavy tasks (like HD streaming, gaming or video calls) all at the same time,” it adds.

It is also a good idea to download any video content in advance, instead of streaming it.

Try wired rather than wireless

For the best broadband speeds, Ofcom recommends using an Ethernet cable to connect your computer directly to your router rather than using wifi. 

An Ethernet cable is a computer networking cable which should give you a faster, more reliable connection and can be purchased from as little as £3.

Plug your router directly into your main phone socket

Where possible, Ofcom suggests not using a telephone extension lead, as these can cause interference which could lower your speed. If you have to use an extension lead, use a new, high-quality cable with the shortest possible length. 

Similarly, tangled and coiled cables can also affect speeds, as can interference from your phone line, so try plugging “microfilters” into every phone socket in your home. 

“They look like little white boxes and split the phone and broadband signals so that they don’t affect each other,” Ofcom says.

Test the speed on your broadband line

Ofcom also recommends running a speed test using its official mobile and broadband checker. 

The tests should be carried out over a few days and at different times of day. 

You can download Ofcom’s checker as a smartphone app (search Ofcom in Apple’s app store or Google Play) or use it through your internet browser.

Get advice from your broadband provider

If your connection still isn’t working as well as it should, Ofcom recommends looking for more information on your broadband provider’s website.

If you need to, you can also contact them for help over the phone. However, people should be aware that, because of the coronavirus, some companies are running with a reduced number of staff who can help with your queries. 

[ad_2]

World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee

The story of Tim Berners-Lee is a fascinating one. He invented the World Wide Web and changed the world with it. He’s not just an inventor, though; he also has a passion for making sure everyone in the world has access to information, education, and opportunity online.
This blog post will discuss how you can get involved in his latest project: Disrupting Digital Inequality.

Read More:- Facebook sues analytics firm for knowledge misuse

The inventor of the world wide web, Tim Berners-Lee, has warned that the online harassment of women and girls is threatening global progress towards gender equality. Berners-Lee, who created the web in 1989, said he was “seriously concerned” about the long-term impact of online gendered abuse.

“I am seriously concerned that online harms facing women and girls — especially those of colour, from LGBTQ+ communities and other minority groups — threaten that progress,” he wrote in an open letter to mark the 31 anniversary of the web.

Download the new Independent Premium app

Sharing the full story, not just the headlines


 ”This should concern us all. And at times like now, when coronavirus is closing offices and schools, the web becomes the only way we can continue to work, teach our children and get vital health information to keep ourselves safe.”

He warned that the problems weren’t just digital but that harassment, sexual abuse and online threats were forcing women out of jobs, causing girls to skip school, damaging relationships and silencing female opinions.

He concluded that “the web is not working for women and girls” and urged governments and companies to do more to combat the growing problem.

In 2019 Berners-Lee launched the Contract for the Web, a global action plan to save online platforms for forces that threaten to create a “digital dystopia”.

He said without tackling misogyny online these aims could not be achieved and said that gender equality now needed to be embedded, by design, into products and services rather than creating them entrenched with existing bias.

“A world where so many women and girls would be deprived of such basics is completely unacceptable,” he said.

According to a survey by the Web Foundation, set up by Berners-Lee, more than half of young women have experienced violence online.

This includes sexual harassment, threatening messages and having private images shared without consent. And 84 per cent believe the problem is getting worse. A study in 2017 found nearly half of girls aged 11 to 18 have suffered harassment or abuse on social media.  Berners-Lee

A poll more than 1,000 girls and boys in the UK found 48 per cent of female respondents had experienced some form of harassment or abuse on social media, such as receiving upsetting messages, having images shared without their consent or feeling harassed through regular contact.

And across both men and women, almost one in four people in the UK have experienced some sort of cyberbullying, according to research released by YouGov.

Those aged 18 to 24 are the most likely to be cyberbullied, with 55 per cent of respondents in this age bracket saying they had experienced some sort of bullying online, followed by 25- to 34-year-olds (33 per cent).

[ad_2]