John is a landscape contractor and he's making the transition to Wi-Fi controlled sprinkler systems for his clients, but there are some locations where the Wi-Fi is just too weak to connect. Is there a booster device he can use? Leo says that he can do that, but he'd need boosters for both directions.
Jose has issues with WiFi reaching to the back bedroom in the house. He gets practically no signal at all on his phone back there either. He's told it would be a major issue to move his base station to make it better. What should he do? Leo says that it's a common problem that is largely due to congestion from everyone in the neighborhood. The key is to get an extender. He'll want one that's from the same company. It will cut his bandwidth in half, however, so that's not an ideal solution.
Is powerline networking a decent option these days? Leo says that it's improved a lot since it was introduced 20 years ago. It was horrible back then. Now it's much better. He won't get the full throughput, though – Only about 60%. And he'll have to be on the same fuse box. Leo also recommends the Plume routers because they have ethernet connections as well, so he could plug in there.
Susan is having trouble streaming with her Blu-ray player and her TV. Leo says it could be that the Blu-ray's Wi-Fi isn't working too well. She may need to move her hotspot closer to the TV itself. It may also be that there's congestion on the 2.4 Ghz band, and her TV won't pick up the 5.0 Ghz band. She should try using her mobile phone as a hotspot and see if it picks it up. If it does, then the Wi-Fi spot is either too far away or is congested and swamped by other signals.
Larry is thinking of going with powerline networking in his house. Leo says that thanks to the Powerline Alliance, powerline networking has gotten a lot better in the last few years. It's not as fast as Ethernet, however -- it's about half the speed. But it's still pretty good. Leo does it for his house and it works great. But instead of 20MB throughput, he'll get half that.
Robert wants to extend his Wi-Fi range. What should he get? Leo says a repeater or extender will help. He'll just put it midway between where he wants to go and where his router is. That will usually work. But if he has issues with the signal getting blocked, he could try powerline networking.
Eric has an Android TV box for streaming and he gets buffering when using Wi-Fi. Leo says that if he can use a wired connection, it'll greatly reduce that. Even at high speeds, Wi-Fi can still cause problems. If he can get a wired connection, it'll be more consistent. Leo also says that powerline networking is a good choice.
Tom wants to know what brand to use for powerline networking, where you use your electrical wiring as a network infrastructure for your network. Leo says he's become a convert to powerline networking. It's gotten a lot better in the last few years. He just plugs in this special kit and he's getting about 20 MB per second, which isn't too bad.
Dave has a home office in his garage and he wants to get Wi-Fi out there, rather than having the wired connection. Leo says that he should be able to get Wi-Fi for at least 150 feet. If he has a lot of wiring in the walls, then he could end up with slower Wi-Fi, or even a dropped signal. The easiest thing to do is to find a repeater that's the same brand as his Wi-Fi router. They're essentially routers that are in "bridge" mode.